Aitzaz Hasan, a teenage student from a remote town in North Western Pakistan, died this week as he saved his fellow classmates from a suicide bomber. Police say he died this week trying to stop the suicide bomber from attacking his school in the country’s “violence-prone northwest.”
Local police official, Raheem Khan, said the event took place on Monday in a remote village in Hangu, a district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. According to The Sydney Morning Herald, a teacher at the school told investigators that he saw Hasan chasing the attacker before seeing the attacker detonate the bomb that killed them both.
Officials believe that the target was in fact the school’s morning assembly of about 450 students according to ABC News. Habib Ali, a senior teacher at the school said, “I saw Aitzaz trying to get hold of a guy and then there was a big explosion. He was an average student, but was a bold child.”
Today, Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, recommended Aitzaz Hasan for the highest civil award for bravery. He said the following in the statement: “Shaheed Aitizaz’s brave act saved the lives of hundreds of students.” While the boy is being labeled a hero for his brave actions, his family is still morning his death. Reports quote Hasan’s father, Mujahid Ali, saying the following:
“My son made his mother cry, but saved hundreds of mothers from crying for their children.”
Miqdar Khan, a local resident, said people all over the area were calling Hasan a hero, and hundreds gathered at his funeral to pay their respects. He continued on to say the following:
“Aitzaz Hasan used to tell all that one day he would capture some suicide bomber, and his class fellows used to laugh,” he said. “But this boy proved what he said, and I am sad that he left us too early.”
If it wasn’t for the boy’s quick thinking and swift actions, residents say that the event could have been more catastrophic, and many parents, students, and teachers could have been killed as a result.
[Image via BBC News]