The man charged with stabbing Salman Rushdie on a lecture stage in western New York said in an interview that he was surprised to learn the accomplished author had survived the attack.
Speaking to the New York Post from jail, Hadi Matar said he decided to see Rushdie at the Chautauqua Institution after he saw a tweet last winter about the writer’s planned appearance.
“I don’t like the person. I don’t think he’s a very good person,” Matar told the newspaper. “He’s someone who attacked Islam. He attacked their beliefs, the belief systems.”
Matar, 24, said he considered late Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini “a great person” but wouldn’t say whether he was following a fatwa, or edict, issued by Khomeini in Iran in 1989 that called for Rushdie’s death after the author published “The Satanic Verses.