Pakistani Girl’s Death in Texas Should Prompt Reflection on Gun Violence

One of the 10 victims in the Santa Fe High School shooting was Sabika Sheikh, an exchange student from Pakistan. She was due to return to her home country in June after participating in an exchange program sponsored by the State Department. CNN reporter Saeed Ahmed compared the shooting of Sheikh to that of Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman who boarded her school bus in 2012. Ahmed wrote, “Both are Pakistani girls: One, Malala, was shot on her way to school by a militant in Swat, near Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan. She survived. The other, Sabika, was shot by a fellow student inside a school in Santa Fe, Texas. She died. But, as many ruefully pointed out, that’s where the comparison ends.” He went on to quote blogger Asfandyar Bhittani, who tweeted that, unlike Malala, “Sabika Sheikh will be forgotten before next weekend.” We’re joined by Murtaza Hussain, a reporter at The Intercept focusing on national security, foreign policy and human rights.

TRANSCRIPT

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman. One of the 10 victims in the Santa Fe High School shooting was an exchange student from Pakistan. Her name was Sabika Aziz Sheikh. She was due to return to Pakistan just in a few weeks, after participating in the exchange program sponsored by the State Department.

Her uncle, Ansar Sheikh, called the shooting an act of terrorism and pleaded with the U.S. government to take action. He said, quote, “I don’t blame the murder of my girl on American society but on that terrorism mindset that is there in all societies. We need to fight it all over the world. I do ask the American government to make sure weapons will not be easily available in your country to anybody. Please make sure this doesn’t happen again. It really hurts,” he said.

Sabika Sheikh’s friend and fellow student Jaelyn Cogburn spoke at her funeral Sunday.

JAELYN COGBURN: When I first started school, I didn’t know anybody. I…

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