Salman Rushdie and his supporters are guilty of the attack, said Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani. The writer was stabbed multiple times before his public appearance on Friday in New York State.
Freedom of speech does not justify an offense against religion by Rushdie in his books, said Kanaani. He added that Iran has no other information about the attacker who attacked Rushdie, other than in the media.
Salman Rushdie, British writer of Indian descent, on Friday was stabbed several times just before the lecture he was to give in the city of Chautauqua, New York, USA.
Rushdie has been subjected to death threats many times in the past for his fourth novel, Satanic Verses, published in 1988. The work, dealing with the subject of the origins of Islam, caused outrage in Islamic countries. Rushdie was officially charged with a fatwawhich orders every faithful Muslim to kill the writer. As a result, he had to live in hiding under the constant protection of the police.
In 1998, the then government of Iran announced that ceases to support fatwawhich in recent years has enabled the writer to return to a more normal life. However, the fatwa was never canceled. Many translators of his books fell victim to attacks, and one of them, the Japanese Hitoshi Igarashi, was killed in 1991 from dagger wounds.
On Sunday, Salman Rushdie’s agent Andrew Wylie reported that the writer had been disconnected from the respirator, however the injuries are serious.
Public defense attorney accused of attacking the writer of Hadi Matar, Nathaniel Barone, said his client pleaded not guilty on charges of attempted second-degree murder and second-degree assault with the intention of causing physical injury using a lethal weapon.
24-year-old Matar faces a prison sentence of up to 32 years. He arrived at Chautauqua at least one day before the lecture and had purchased an admission ticket two days earlier.
CNN, citing unidentified witnesses attending the lecture, said that participants were not searched prior to the lecture nor checked with a metal detector. According to the TV station, this raises questions about the maintenance of appropriate security measures by the organizers of the lecture.