Author Salman Rushdie was attacked at a cultural event in upstate New York. According to the police, he and his interlocutor were attacked on a stage in a venue in the town of Chautauqua in western New York state.
A reporter from the Associated Press news agency saw a man storm the stage and began stabbing Rushdie as he was being introduced. Police said the 75-year-old author was taken to hospital by helicopter with stab wounds to the neck. According to his agent, Rushdie underwent emergency surgery and was put on a ventilator. Nerve cords in his arm were severed and his liver was damaged, the manager said. Rushdie could lose an eye.
The attacker was overwhelmed by onlookers and arrested by a police officer who was present. The motive of the 24-year-old from Fairfield in the state of New Jersey, which is close to New York, is so far unclear.
The man who was supposed to interview Rushdie suffered minor head injuries, it said. The “New York Times” quotes a witness: “There was only one attacker”. And further: “He was dressed in black. He was wearing a loose black garment. He ran towards Rushdie at lightning speed.”
Helpers take care of the author lying on the ground
Because of his 1988 work The Satanic Verses, Rushdie was once issued with a fatwa calling for his death. Some Muslims felt their religious sensibilities were offended by the work. At the time, Iran’s revolutionary leader Ayatollah Khomeini issued an Islamic legal opinion calling for the killing of Rushdie and everyone involved in distributing the book.
During his performance, Rushdie was attacked by a man who stormed the stage
A Japanese translator was later actually killed. Rushdie had to go into hiding and was given police protection. Rushdie was born in the year of Indian independence in 1947 in the metropolis of Mumbai (then Bombay). He later studied history at King’s College, Cambridge. His breakthrough as an author was Midnight’s Children, which won the prestigious Booker Prize in 1981.