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ISLAMABAD: Malala Yousafzai said that Islam had taught her the value of education and said that her message to the world was only of peace.
"The first ayat that was revealed from the Holy Quran is named Iqra, which means read," she said.
Malala was speaking to a foreign news agency in Islamabad where she arrived a couple of days earlier. She said that education was her only message and that Islam gave rights to women.
Malala urged those who were calling her an agent to come forward with evidence to support their claims.
"I am not an agent, I just want education for girls," she said.
Malala said that the situation in Pakistan had improved but she could still recall the horrifying moments when she was shot by the Taliban in 2012. She expressed happiness on returning to Pakistan after five-and-a-half years.
"I am proud of my religion, and I am proud of my country," she said. "I miss everything about Pakistan ... right from the rivers, the mountains, to even the dirty streets and the garbage around our house, and my friends and how we used to have gossip and talk about our school life, to how we used to fight with our neighbors."
Malala said that she wanted to return to Pakistan but her studies at Oxford were keeping her occupied.APP/AFP