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Salman Rushdie stabbed in neck, suffered head injury: New York Police

Rushdie is attacked while lecturing in western New York. (Photo: @piersmorgan)

Author Salman Rushdie, whose writing led to death threats from Iran in the 1980s, was stabbed Friday as he was about to give a lecture at the Chautauqua Institute in western New York. Rushdie, 75, was stabbed as he was introduced onstage.

According to New York police, the attacker ran onto the stage and assaulted Rushdie and an interviewer. Video footage of the event shows people coming to the rescue of Rushdie.

A small group of people surrounded the author, holding his legs up, presumably to send more blood to his chest, AP reported.

The 75-year-old author was taken to hospital by plane and the attacker is currently in police custody.

“Rushdie suffered a significant stab wound to the neck and was transported by helicopter to a nearby hospital. His condition is not yet known. The interviewer suffered a minor head injury,” the New York Police Department said in a statement.

Hundreds of people gathered at the Chautauqua Institute were evacuated after the attack on Rushdie.

Salman Rushdie rose to prominence with his 1981 Booker Prize-winning novel Midnight’s Children, but his name became known around the world after The Satanic Verses. The book has been banned in Iran since 1988 because many Muslims consider it blasphemous.

Later, Iran’s late leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, issued a fatwa or edict calling for Rushdie’s death.

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Rushdie, who lives in New York, had launched a strong defense of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo after its staff was gunned down by Islamists in Paris in 2015.

Salman Rushdie attacked: what we know so far

  • Author Salman Rushdie was stabbed in the neck at an event in western New York
  • He received immediate medical attention and was flown to a local hospital
  • The attacker is under police custody and the motive behind the attack is not yet known

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