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Author Salman Rushdie On Ventilator After Stabbing, Attacker Identified

Salman Rushdie was airlifted to hospital where he underwent emergency surgery.

New Delhi:
Author Salman Rushdie was stabbed in the neck and abdomen on Friday at a literary event in New York, US. The 75-year-old author is on a ventilator and may lose an eye. Police have identified his attacker.

  1. The author’s agent said Salman Rushdie suffered from severed nerves in an arm and damage to his liver, and could lose an eye. “The news is not good,” Andrew Wylie, his agent, wrote in an email. “Salman will probably lose one eye; the nerves in his arm have been severed and his liver has been stabbed and damaged.”

  2. New York State Police identified his attacker as Hadi Matar, 24, of New Jersey. “The motive behind the attack remains unclear,” officials said.

  3. Mr Rushdie was repeatedly stabbed by Hadi Matar, who ran to the stage and attacked him. Henry Reese, the interviewer, also suffered a head injury in the attack.

  4. Footage and images circulating on social media show a number of people in the audience running to the stage and bringing the suspect to the ground before a trooper present at the event arrested him.

  5. A doctor who attended the event provided medical care until the emergency services arrived. Mr Rushdie was then flown to hospital where he underwent emergency surgery.

  6. The attack took place as Rushdie was about to give a speech at the Chautauqua Institute near New York City, which hosts arts programs. There were about 2,500 people in the audience, who were later evacuated.

  7. New York Governor Kathy Hochul condemned the stabbing and praised Rushdie as “a person who has been telling the truth to power for decades.” “We condemn all violence and we want people to feel (the) freedom to speak and write the truth,” she said.

  8. Mr Rushdie was put in the spotlight with his second novel “Midnight’s Children” in 1981, which won international acclaim and the prestigious Booker Prize.

  9. Salman Rushdie, a British citizen of Indian descent who has lived in the US for the past 20 years, has faced threats for decades in his 1988 book, The Satanic Verses. The novel was regarded by some clerics as disrespectful to the prophet Muhammad.

  10. A reward was put on his head by top Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini who called for his assassination. He was in hiding for nearly ten years, moving repeatedly and unable to tell his children where he lived. Mr Rushdie only started to flee his life after the Iranian government said in 1998 that it will not enforce that ‘fatwa’ or that edict.

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