Salman Rushdie attack suspect pleads not guilty

Reuters
August 14, 2022

New York Times reports Salman Rushdie has started to talk, citing his agent Andrew Wylie

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British-Indian author Salman Rushdie. Photo: Reuters/file


NEW YORK:British-Indian author Salman Rushdie remained hospitalised on Saturday with serious injuries a day after he was repeatedly stabbed at a public appearance in New York state, while police sought to determine the motive behind an attack.

The accused attacker, 24-year-old Hadi Matar of Fairview, New Jersey, pleaded not guilty to charges of attempted murder and assault at a court appearance on Saturday, his court-appointed lawyer, Nathaniel Barone, told Reuters.

Rushdie, 75, was set to deliver a lecture on artistic freedom at Chautauqua Institution in western New York when police say Matar rushed the stage and stabbed the Indian-born writer, who has lived with a bounty on his head since his 1988 blasphemous novel "The Satanic Verses" prompted Iran to urge Muslims to kill him.

Following hours of surgery, Rushdie was on a ventilator and unable to speak as of Friday evening, according to his agent, Andrew Wylie. The novelist was likely to lose an eye and had nerve damage in his arm and wounds to his liver, Wylie said in an email.

Wylie did not respond to messages requesting updates on Rushdie's condition on Saturday, though the New York Times reported that Rushdie had started to talk, citing Wylie.


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