Indications of hope for shot Pakistani girl

(CBS News) ISLAMABAD - In Pakistan Saturday, chants of "Malala....we are with you," supporting 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai shot in the head on her way home from school. The Taliban claims responsibility for the assassination attempt four days ago. Doctors on Saturday saw signs of hope.

Rarely have Pakistanis come together in such shared outrage. In a country used both to terrorist attacks and violence against women, this shooting marked a new low. It's triggered vigils, prayers and protests.

Malala was transferred into the care of Pakistani military surgeons this week.

Positive signs in Pakistani girl's recovery
Pakistani teen girls' activist Malala Yousufzai shot on school bus by Taliban gunman
Shot Pakistani teen activist faces long recovery ahead

They removed the bullet that had been fired into her head, but which came to rest in her upper chest.

On Saturday, though Malala's on a ventilator, her doctors were trying to gauge the damage, said military spokesman Asim Bajwa.

"They reduced her sedation today," he said. "Malala did respond to that, and she did move her four limbs."

Since 2009, Malala has defied local Taliban edicts, campaigning for girls' right to an education. That put her on the Taliban hit list.

When asked if Malala can be protected if she survives, Bajwa said: "Yeah, surely, you know, the state will do their best to protect her. She's a symbol of hope...she's a beacon of light for all the girls of this country. We would love to protect every Malala of this country."

That's the first tall order for Pakistan's security forces. The second will be arresting Malala's attackers. Police have detained and released several people over the past few days, but so far not the men who pulled the triggers.

  • Elizabeth Palmer

    Elizabeth Palmer has been a CBS News correspondent since August 2000. She has been based in London since late 2003, after having been based in Moscow (2000-03). Palmer reports primarily for the "CBS Evening News."