Six-year-old girl shot by Taliban to have face reconstructed in life-changing surgery at Long Island hospital


Six-year-old girl shot by Taliban to have face reconstructed in life-changing surgery at Long Island hospital

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UPDATED:

22:33 GMT, 21 December 2012

A beautiful 6-year-old girl who's face was ruined by a Taliban's bullet in Afghanistan will undergo surgery at a Long Island hospital Friday to repair her face and be able to breathe normally again.

Marizeh – who's last name is being withheld to protect surviving family in Afghanistan – lost her right eye in the attacks months ago.

The bullet went in through her left cheek then exited her right temple, according to Long Island plastic surgeon Dr. Kaveh Alizadeh.

Marizeh

Smashed: Marizeh's face was ruined when a Taliban shot her in Afghanistan

Marizeh

Alone: Marizeh father and brother were killed in the attack that wounded her ace

'They killed her father and brother, and they shot her in the face. They left
her for dead,’ Alizadeh said. 'Fortunately, she survived.'

Alizadeh works with Mission Restore, which is an organization of doctors who treat victims from war-torn areas.

Marizeh will undergo surgery at South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside.

The surgery will take an estimated 2 hours, during which her skull will be reconstructed, scar tissue removed from her nose, and cartilage will be grafted from her ear to her nasal septum.

Marizeh

Carefree: If the operation to correct her breathing is successful Marizeh will be able to sleep through the night for the first time in months

Once the operation is done, Marizeh will again be able to breathe through her nose, allowing her to sleep through the night for the first time since the shooting.

She will also receive a prosthetic eye.

She was brought to the country by the Global Medical Relief Fund of Staten Island.

Marizeh

Operating: If her procedure is successful Marizeh will get a new prosthetic eye and be able to breathe properly for the first time since she was wounded

'She is a precious little angel. We love her,’' the group’s Elissa Montanti, told the New York Post.

As Marizeh speaks no English they use charades to communicate with her.

'She
has been through a hell,' Montanti said.

Marizeh only survived
because her father shielded her before he himself was killed.

'I can’t imagine what she feels because she witnessed that,' Montanti said. But, 'She is full of life and always smiling.'