Afghan teenager's acid attack
A teenage girl whose face was sprayed with acid on her way to school in the southern province of Kandahar Afghanistan, has been speaking about what happened.
Your Story citizen journalist and blogger Baktash Siawash managed to see Shamsia as she lay in a hospital bed recovering from the attack.
Listen Listen to Baktash's Your Story citizen journalist report (5 mins 2 secs)
Baktash managed to get into the hospital Shamsia was transferred to in Kabul after speaking to someone he knows working there, who said he might be able to join a group of schoolgirls, teachers and journalists who were going in to speak to her.
Baktash says that Shamsia had trouble opening her eyes
Shamsia said that two men on motorcycles drove alongside her and her sister as they were on their way to school at 8 o'clock in the morning. They were running late.
One of the men asked where they were going.
"To school" she replied.
It was then that he sprayed the acid into her face using a small plastic gun.
She shouted for help, but no one came.
She managed to get home where her mother took her to hospital.
When Baktash saw Shamsia on the hospital bed, he says it was an emotional moment, as the other girls were shocked and a teacher was crying. He says she could hardly open her eyes due to the burns.
Under the Taleban government, girls were banned from attending classes and the attitudes surrounding the issue of female education remain entrenched.
Baktash says that there has been universal condemnation of the attack on Shamsia. But when he talks to people about whether girls should be allowed to go to school and the wider issue of Afghan womens' role outside the home, it is a different story.
One man Baktash spoke to said:
Schoolgirls come to see Shamsia in hospital
"Our culture and Afghan pride do not permit our wives to go outside and work, what are men for? Those who think it's OK must have come from abroad."
Baktash says he was struck by Shamsia's bravery as she said she had one message for those who threw the acid on her face:
"If they repeat this action on me a hundred times I will never leave school and I will continue my studying."
And she had another message for Kandahari school girls:
"Please, please, please do not leave school and your learning."
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