- Writer Salman Rushdie was stabbed about 10 times on Friday in what prosecutors called a premeditated attack.
- The suspect, 24-year-old Hadi Matar, pleaded not guilty to charges including attempted murder on Saturday.
- Rushdie’s book “The Satanic Verses” has sparked controversy since its publication in 1988.
Hadi Matar, 24, who was accused of stabbing author Salman Rushdie on Friday, pleaded not guilty to attempted murder and assault with a weapon charges during his arraignment on Saturday.
According to The New York Times, Rushdie was stabbed about 10 times on Friday as he took the stage to deliver a speech that prosecutors called a premeditated and targeted attack.
CNN reported that the 75-year-old writer’s injuries included three stab wounds to his neck, four to his abdomen, stab wounds to his right eye and chest, and a laceration to his right thigh. . arraignment.
Rushdie’s agent, Andrew Wiley, told The New York Times on Friday:
Mattar, a US citizen living in New Jersey, was carrying two fake IDs when he was arrested, according to The New York Times. He was defended by a public defender and was denied his bail after filing a plea of not guilty.
CNN reported that Matar did not speak during his arraignment, although his attorney said he was “cooperative.” Matar’s next court appearance is scheduled for August 19 at 3:00 pm.
President Joe Biden released a statement on Saturday saying he and first lady Jill were “shocked and saddened” by the “vicious” attack.
“With his insight into humanity, his unparalleled sense of storytelling, and his refusal to intimidate or silence, Salman Rushdie represents essential and universal ideals,” Biden said in a statement. Resilience, the ability to share ideas without fear: these are the building blocks of a free and open society, and today we stand in solidarity with Rushdie and all those who support freedom to We reaffirm our commitment to the deep American values of expression.”
The Satanic Verses author has faced death threats over his controversial writings since the 1988 publication of a novel inspired by the life of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad.
In 1989, Iranian cleric Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa calling for Rushdie’s assassination, claiming that the book was “contrary to Islam, the Prophet and the Quran.”
New York State Police said at a news conference Friday that the motive for the attack was not yet clear.