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Los Angeles: Alisha — the Afghan girl who became the face of Taliban opression after her nose was cut off by her husband — has got a new face. Ayesha’s plight was highlighted by Time magazine after she was married off to a Taliban fighter at the age of 12.

When she tried to escape, her nose and ears were sliced off by her husband. Now thanks to a complicated surgery, she got a new nose. The Grossman Burn Foundation paid for her operation in Los Angeles

The 19-year-old Alisha triggered a worldwide outpouring of sympathy after her plight was highlighted by the ‘Time’ magazine which put her on the front cover to draw attention to sufferings of women in Afghanistan.

The girl, thanks to pioneering surgery by American surgeons, got a new nose and appeared before the cameras to receive an Enduring Heart Award by a foundation which paid for her operation in Los Angeles, ‘The Telegraph’ reported.

Alisha was 12 when her father married her to a Taliban fighter to repay a debt. She was handed over to the militant’s family, abused and made to sleep in a stable with animals.

Depressed due to ill treatment by her husband and in-laws, she tried to escape and her nose and ears were sliced off by her husband as punishment.

After being left for dead in the mountains, Alisha crawled to her grandfather’s house from where she was rushed to an American medical facility.

The Grossman Burn Foundation flew her to America in August where she had a prosthetic nose fitted at the West Hills hospital and the doctors say she would be given a “more permanent” solution soon.

This might involve rebuilding her nose and ears, using bone, tissue and cartilage from other parts of the body.

Till then, Alisha is back to her old joyful ways.

“This is an award given to a woman whose heart endures,” said the Californian First Lady Maria Shriver, wife of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who presented the award to a girl who never thought she would see life again.

(With inputs from PTI)

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