Pakistan school massacre survivor tops GCSE exams

Ahmad Nawaz lost his younger brother in the 2014 Peshawar attack and sustained serious injuries himself

Dubai: Four years after surviving a grave tragedy, a Pakistani high school student is being congratulated on twitter for his achievements in the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) exams.

Ahmad Nawaz, a survivor of the 2014 Army Public School (APS) attack in Peshawar, Pakistan, shared his GCSE results on twitter.

From his official account, @Ahmadnawazaps, he tweeted: “My international GCSE exam result just came out and I am very proud to announce that I got 6A*s and 2As in all my eight exams. Thanks to my parents and all of you for supporting me. This is a big success for me and takes me many steps closer to my admission in Oxford Uni.”

His tweet was garnering a lot of reaction, with over 650 retweets and 600 comments, with every tweep congratulating him for achieving such results.

Tweep @iizapotato posted: “Congratulations Ahmad! Today you have taught me one thing, that courage and standing by our aims is the most important key to success. So proud of you! May you make Pakistan proud.”

@Razarumi tweeted: “Mashallah. What a great story of courage and resilience. Keep it up @Ahmadnawazaps and hope Pak Army will defeat all those groups that target children. What we need is peace in Pakistan and Afganistan.”

Tweep @javaid_kinza added: “Congrats brother. All of this is because of your courage that you gathered after an unexpected incident. Bad times in life are challenges not hurdles. More power to you.”

Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, the director-general of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) in Pakistan, also shared his greetings.

@OfficialDGISPR tweeted: “Congrats and well done dear @Ahmadnawazaps. You made us all proud and defeated evil forces through your courage, determination and power of education. Good luck for your future pursuits. Stay blessed.”

While today he dreams of going to UK-based University of Oxford, less than four years ago he was caught in a brutal attack at his school in Peshawar. In total, 141 people died in the attack, 132 of them were children.

Then aged 14, Nawaz was shot in the arm and survived the attack by playing dead.

In an interview with BBC after the attack, he was heard saying: “I kept quiet and pretended to be dead. There was so much blood, my shirt and face was fully covered. They thought I was dead.”

Nawaz lost his younger brother, Haris, in the attack. According to a BBC report from 2014, “seven Taliban attackers wearing bomb vests cut through a wire fence to gain entry to the school” and went from room to room shooting pupils and teachers.

In another video shared by the BBC, Nawaz is heard speaking to an assembly of more than 100 schoolchildren in Birmingham, UK.

He says: “I always thought that school was a safe place, not a place where children would be brutally massacred. All I could see was blood and killing.”

He often speaks about his experiences on different platforms and started a campaign to raise awareness about education when he heard that a number of students from the UK were travelling to Iraq and Syria for terrorist activities.

“My message to all Pakistanis is to educate your children… I’d humbly request the youth to invest in the country’s development… you are the torch bearers of future,” he was quoted as saying in an interview with The Express Tribune, a Pakistan-based English newspaper.

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