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World Man accused of stabbing author Salman Rushdie enters not-guilty plea

00:30  14 august  2022
00:30  14 august  2022 Source:   latimes.com

Salman Rushdie Attacked Onstage After Having Bounty in Place for Years

  Salman Rushdie Attacked Onstage After Having Bounty in Place for Years A reporter saw a man rush up to a stage and attack the author before he was expected to deliver a lecture in New York on Friday morning.According to the Associated Press, a reporter saw a man rush to the stage at the Chautauqua Institution and attack Rushdie. The man was reportedly restrained at the scene.

The man accused of carrying out a stabbing attack against “Satanic Verses” author Salman Rushdie has entered a not-guilty plea in a New York court on charges of attempted murder and assault.

Salman Rushdie at a 2017 awards ceremony in New York. Rushdie remained hospitalized Saturday after suffering serious injuries in a stabbing attack, which was met with shock and outrage from much of the world, along with tributes and praise for the award-winning author who for more than 30 years has faced death threats for his novel © (Evan Agostini / Invision / Associated Press) Salman Rushdie at a 2017 awards ceremony in New York. Rushdie remained hospitalized Saturday after suffering serious injuries in a stabbing attack, which was met with shock and outrage from much of the world, along with tributes and praise for the award-winning author who for more than 30 years has faced death threats for his novel "The Satanic Verses." (Evan Agostini / Invision / Associated Press)

An attorney for Hadi Matar, 24, entered the plea on his behalf during an arraignment hearing. Matar appeared in court wearing a black and white jumpsuit and a white face mask. His hands were cuffed in front of him.

What is a fatwa? Salman Rushdie's backstory moves center stage after attack

  What is a fatwa? Salman Rushdie's backstory moves center stage after attack A fatwa was issued against Salman Rushdie in 1989 over his book 'The Satanic Verses.' But what is a fatwa and how has it affected his life and career?That death sentence — a fatwa — had immediate effects on Rushdie's life, spurring him into hiding for the better part of 10 years and dogging him and others around him who were related to the publication of the book.

Matar is accused of attacking Rushdie on Friday as the author was being introduced at a lecture at the Chautauqua Institute.

Rushdie suffered serious injuries in the attack and remains hospitalized.

Rushdie, 75, suffered a damaged liver, severed nerves in an arm and an eye, and was on a ventilator and unable to speak, his agent Andrew Wylie said Friday evening. Rushdie was likely to lose the injured eye.

Authors, activists and government officials condemned the attack and cited Rushdie's courage for his longtime advocacy of free speech despite the risks to his own safety. Rushdie's fellow author and longtime friend Ian McEwan called him “an inspirational defender of persecuted writers and journalists across the world,” and actor-author Kal Penn cited him as a role model “for an entire generation of artists, especially many of us in the South Asian diaspora toward whom he’s shown incredible warmth.”

Explaining the controversy around 'Satanic Verses,' the book that led to the fatwa against author Salman Rushdie

  Explaining the controversy around 'Satanic Verses,' the book that led to the fatwa against author Salman Rushdie Published in 1988, Rushdie's "The Satanic Verses" was decried by some as blasphemous for its portrayal of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.Maxwell, convicted in December of sexually abusing girls and trafficking them in order to have sex with Epstein, was also fined $750,000 and will be on probation for five years after her release.

Matar, 24, was arrested after the attack at the Chautauqua Institution, a nonprofit education and retreat center where Rushdie was scheduled to speak.

Authorities said Matar is from Fairview, N.J. He was born in the United States to Lebanese parents who emigrated from Yaroun, a border village in southern Lebanon, the mayor of the village, Ali Tehfe, told the Associated Press. Flags of Iran-backed Shia militant group Hezbollah and portraits of leader Hassan Nasrallah, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, his late predecessor Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, and slain Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani are visible across the village. The village also boasts a small Christian population.

Rushdie, a native of India who has since lived in Britain and the U.S., is known for his surreal and satirical prose style, beginning with his Booker Prize-winning novel from 1981, “Midnight's Children,” in which he sharply criticized India's then-prime minister, Indira Gandhi.

Author Salman Rushdie on ventilator, could lose eye after stabbing on lecture stage

  Author Salman Rushdie on ventilator, could lose eye after stabbing on lecture stage Rushdie was taken by helicopter to a hospital. "The news is not good," his agent said, adding that he had nerve and liver damage.Rushdie, whose book "The Satanic Verses" sent him undercover out of fear for his life, was preparing to speak at the Chautauqua Institution in western New York when Hadi Matar, 24, rushed the stage around 10:45 a.m., attacked him and an interviewer and then started to stab the 75-year-old author, police said.

“The Satanic Verses” drew death threats after it was published in 1988, with many Muslims regarding as blasphemy a dream sequence based on the life of the Prophet Muhammad, among other objections. Rushdie's book had already been banned and burned in India, Pakistan and elsewhere before Iran's Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a 1989 fatwa, or edict, calling for Rushdie’s death.

Khomeini died the same year he issued the fatwa, which remains in effect. Iran’s current supreme leader, Khamenei, never issued a fatwa of his own withdrawing the edict, though Iran in recent years hasn’t focused on the writer.

Investigators were working to determine whether the assailant, born a decade after “The Satanic Verses” was published, acted alone.

Journalists present in Yaroun, the village where the suspect’s parents emigrated from, were asked to leave Saturday. Hezbollah spokespeople did not respond to the AP’s inquiries about Matar and the attack on Rushdie.

Iran’s theocratic government and its state-run media assigned no rationale for the assault. In Tehran, some Iranians interviewed by the AP praised the attack on an author they believe tarnished the Islamic faith, while others worried it would further isolate their country.

Author Salman Rushdie on ventilator after New York stabbing

  Author Salman Rushdie on ventilator after New York stabbing CHAUTAUQUA, N.Y. (AP) — Salman Rushdie, whose novel “The Satanic Verses” drew death threats from Iran’s leader in the 1980s, was stabbed in the neck and abdomen Friday by a man who rushed the stage as the author was about to give a lecture in western New York. A bloodied Rushdie, 75, was flown to a hospital and underwent surgery. His agent, Andrew Wylie, said the writer was on a ventilator Friday evening, with a damaged liver, severed nerves in his arm and an eye he was likely to lose. © Provided by Associated Press ADDS NAME OF DETAINED PERSON This still image from video shows Hadi Matar, 24, of Fairview, N.J.

An AP reporter witnessed the attacker confront Rushdie on stage and stab or punch him 10 to 15 times as the author was being introduced. Dr. Martin Haskell, a physician who was among those who rushed to help, described Rushdie’s wounds as “serious but recoverable.”

Event moderator Henry Reese, 73, a co-founder of an organization that offers residencies to writers facing persecution, was also attacked. Reese suffered a facial injury and was treated and released from a hospital, police said. He and Rushdie had planned to discuss the United States as a refuge for writers and other artists in exile.

A state trooper and a county sheriff’s deputy were assigned to Rushdie’s lecture, and state police said the trooper made the arrest. But after the attack, some longtime visitors to the center questioned why there wasn’t tighter security for the event, given the threats against Rushdie and a bounty on his head offering more than $3 million to anyone who killed him.

Matar, like other visitors, had obtained a pass to enter the Chautauqua Institution’s 750-acre grounds, said Michael Hill, the institution’s president.

Rabbi Charles Savenor was among the roughly 2,500 people in the audience for Rushdie's appearance.

The assailant ran onto the platform “and started pounding on Mr. Rushdie. At first you’re like, ‘What’s going on?’ And then it became abundantly clear in a few seconds that he was being beaten,” Savenor said. He said the attack lasted about 20 seconds.

Suspect Allegedly Involved in Salman Rushdie's Stabbing Charged with Attempted Murder and Assault

  Suspect Allegedly Involved in Salman Rushdie's Stabbing Charged with Attempted Murder and Assault Salman Rushdie was stabbed "at least once in the neck and at least once in the abdomen" on Friday, according to officialsThe 24-year-old man who allegedly attacked Salman Rushdie in upstate New York on Friday has been charged with attempted murder and assault — both in the second degree — according to multiple outlets.

Another spectator, Kathleen James, said the attacker was dressed in black, with a black mask.

Amid gasps, spectators were ushered out of the outdoor amphitheater.

The stabbing reverberated from the tranquil town of Chautauqua to the United Nations, which issued a statement expressing U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ horror and stressing that free expression and opinion should not be met with violence.

Iran’s mission to the United Nations did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday’s attack, which led an evening news bulletin on Iranian state television. From the White House, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan described the attack as “reprehensible” and said the Biden administration wished Rushdie a quick recovery.

After the publication of “The Satanic Verses,” often-violent protests erupted across the Muslim world against Rushdie, who was born in India to a Muslim family and has long identified as a nonbeliever, once calling himself “a hard-line atheist.”

At least 45 people were killed in riots over the book, including 12 people in Rushdie’s hometown of Mumbai. In 1991, a Japanese translator of the book was stabbed to death and an Italian translator survived a knife attack. In 1993, the book’s Norwegian publisher was shot three times and survived.

The death threats and bounty led Rushdie to go into hiding under a British government protection program, which included a round-the-clock armed guard. Rushdie emerged after nine years of seclusion and cautiously resumed more public appearances, maintaining his outspoken criticism of religious extremism overall.

In 2012, Rushdie published a memoir, “Joseph Anton,” about the fatwa. The title came from the pseudonym Rushdie used while in hiding. He said during a New York talk the same year the memoir came out that terrorism was really the art of fear.

“The only way you can defeat it is by deciding not to be afraid,” he said.

The Chautauqua Institution, about 55 miles southwest of Buffalo in a rural corner of New York, has served for more than a century as a place for reflection and spiritual guidance. Visitors don’t pass through metal detectors or undergo bag checks. Most people leave the doors to their century-old cottages unlocked at night.

The center is known for its summertime lecture series, where Rushdie has spoken before.

At an evening vigil, a few hundred residents and visitors gathered for prayer, music and a long moment of silence.

“Hate can’t win,” one man shouted.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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