Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has called Salman Rushdie’s attempted murder ‘terrible and sad’, saying while the Islamic world’s anger at the Mumbai-born author’s controversial novel ‘The Satanic Verses’ is understandable , the act was unjustifiable. , a media outlet reported on Friday.
Salman Rushdie, 75, was stabbed by a 24-year-old New Jersey resident identified as Hadi Matar, an American national of Lebanese descent, on stage last week while performing at a literary event in the Chautauqua Institution in western New York. .
He suffered three stab wounds to the neck, four stab wounds to the stomach, punctures to his right eye and chest and a laceration to his right thigh, Chautauqua County District Attorney Jason Schmidt said. when the suspect is charged.
“I think it’s terrible, sad,” Imran Khan said in an interview with The Guardian newspaper, when asked for his response to Rushdie’s assault.
“Rushdie understood, because he came from a Muslim family. He knows the love, the respect, the reverence of a prophet who lives in our hearts. He knew it,” Khan told the British newspaper.
“So the anger, I get it, but you can’t justify what happened,” he explained.
Imran Khan and Salman Rushdie share an acrimonious relationship.
In 2012, the Pakistani chairman of Tehreek-e-Insaf refused to attend a media conclave in New Delhi after learning of Rushdie’s participation.
Imran Khan canceled his participation as keynote speaker at the conclave saying he could not think of participating in an event that included Rushdie, which caused “immeasurable harm to Muslims around the world”.
Rushdie’s fourth book, The Satanic Verses, released in 1988, forced him into hiding for nine years.
Iran’s late leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini accused Rushdie of blasphemy over the book and in 1989 issued a fatwa against him, calling for his death.
Salman Rushdie’s writings have led to death threats from Iran, which has offered a $3 million reward for anyone who kills him.