Author Salman Rushdie was attacked on a stage where he was due to give a lecture at the Chautauqua Institution in western New York.
A man ran onto the stage and assaulted Rushdie, 75, as he was being introduced. according to the Associated Press. A group of people helped Rushdie by holding his legs up while the attacker was stopped. The author’s condition was unknown at the time of reporting. Agence France-Presse said police have confirmed a stabbing occurred.
Rushdie has spent the past 34 years under the threat of death. Shortly after Rushdie’s book The Devil’s Verses was published in 1988, Iran’s Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa, or religious edict, cry for his death. There is currently a $3 million bounty offered by an Iranian foundation for anyone who kills the author.
The attack took place in Chautauqua’s open-air amphitheater, which seats about 4,000 people. Members of the public were reportedly evacuated after the attack. The institution, located 55 miles southwest of Buffalo, holds lecture series every summer, and Rushdie has spoken there before.