x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Pakistan to name school and stadium after hero schoolboy who saved hundreds thwarting suicide bomber

Aitzaz Hasan, a 15-year-old from the Ibrahimzai village in northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province become a national hero after intercepting the bomber before he was able to enter Hasan’s school last week.

PESHAWAR // A Pakistani schoolboy who sacrificed his own life to save hundreds of his classmates by tackling a suicide bomber will have his school and a stadium named after him.

Aitzaz Hasan, a 15-year-old from the Ibrahimzai village in northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province become a national hero after intercepting the bomber before he was able to enter Hasan’s school last week.

The teen died in hospital after the bomber blew himself up some 150 metres from the main gate of the school of 1,000 students, though no one else was wounded or killed in the incident.

“We have decided to name Aitzaz Hassan’s school after him. We will also construct a sports stadium in Hangu and will name it after Hassan,” Amjad Afridi, a senior adviser to the provincial government, said.

Mr Afridi, who along with another senior official went to pay their personal respects to the family of Hasan, added the provincial government would also donate five million rupees (Dh172,000) to the bereaved parents.

The award comes after the office of prime minister Nawaz Sharif last week said it would seek “to approve the conferment of a top national bravery award Sitara-e-Shujjat (star of bravery)” on the teen.

Hasan’s act of bravery, which prevented the bomber from striking the morning school assembly, has received an outpouring of tributes from across Pakistan.

Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai, who survived being shot in the head by the Taliban for championing girls’ right to education, also paid tribute to the teenager last week, describing him as “brave and courageous”.

* Agence France-Presse