Pakistani-Canadian senator bonds with Malala Yousafzai's parents in UK

The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - A Conservative senator has paid a visit to the parents of injured young education activist Malala Yousafzai.

Salma Ataullahjan, a Pakistani Canadian, says it was a personal decision to take a detour to Birmingham, England, from Geneva where she was attending a conference.

Fourteen-year-old Yousafzai was shot by a pair of Taliban militants as she rode a school bus in early October.

The senator says the parents were taken aback when they discovered she was from the same region of Pakistan as they were, and that she spoke their language of Pashto.

The visit in a private room of a hospital wound up lasting more than 90 minutes, as they chatted about Pakistan and their respective children.

Ataullahjan says the Yousafzais are pleased with Malala's recovery, and that she's aware of the outpouring of support from Canadians.