‘Like a form of dangerous prank’: Man on stage with Salman Rushdie tells of horrific assault

The man who was presupposed to interview novelist Salman Rushdie earlier than he was attacked onstage in New York on Friday is talking out about how surprising the ambush was to him.

Henry Reese, co-founder of Metropolis of Asylum, a nonprofit group primarily based in Pittsburgh that homes writers exiled for controversial writings, sat down for an interview with CNN host Brian Stelter. Whereas Rushdie was grievously wounded — he seems to be on his method to restoration — Reese acquired a minor harm and is seen within the interview with a swollen eye and a patch on his face.

“It was very obscure, it appeared like a form of dangerous prank. It did not have any sense of actuality, after which, when there was blood behind him, it grew to become actual,” Reese stated.


Reese declined to present any extra particulars in regards to the assault, saying he did not wish to speak about it.

After struggling extreme accidents on Friday, together with a neck wound, Rushdie has simply been taken off a ventilator and begun to speak once more. His agent, Andrew Wylie, advised CNN of the excellent news on Sunday.

Iran US Salman Rushdie Assault
Individuals scan publications at a information stand in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022. Salman Rushdie, whose novel “The Satanic Verses” drew loss of life threats from Iran’s chief within the Eighties, was stabbed within the neck and stomach Friday by a person who rushed the stage because the creator was about to present a lecture in western New York. (AP Photograph/Vahid Salemi)

Vahid Salemi/AP

“He’s off the ventilator, so the street to restoration has begun,” he stated. “It is going to be lengthy — the accidents are extreme. However his situation is headed in the proper path.”

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Prosecutors stated that the creator was stabbed 10 occasions by Hadi Matar, a 24-year-old New Jersey man, in a premeditated assault, in keeping with the New York Instances. A public defender for Matar, who’s charged with tried homicide and assault, entered a not-guilty plea for the suspect. Matar is being held in jail with out bail, awaiting his subsequent courtroom look set for Friday.


Rushdie would possibly lose an eye fixed, his liver was broken, and the nerves in his arm are severed, Wylie advised the newspaper.

Regardless of the outpouring of assist from most in the USA and West, solidarity wasn’t discovered in every single place. In Iran — the place the Ayatollah famously issued a fatwa calling for Rushdie’s loss of life following his 1988 publication of The Satanic Verses, which many Muslims discover blasphemous — the information was met with jubilation. The entrance web page of Keyhan, a newspaper printed in Tehran, stated that Rushdie had been met with “divine vengeance” and that former President Donald Trump and Mike Pompeo “are subsequent.”

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