Salman Rushdie taken off ventilator: "His usual feisty & defiant sense of humour remains intact"

Salman Rushdie taken off ventilator: “His usual feisty & defiant sense of humour remains intact”

In a statement released yesterday afternoon, Salman Rushdie’s son, Zafar Rushdie, revealed that the author has been “taken off the ventilator,” but “remains in critical condition” following the attack on Friday. The Indian-born novelist, who lives in the U.S., was about to about to begin a lecture at the Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, New York, when he was attacked by a man who stabbed him repeatedly. The suspect has been identified as 24-year-old Hadi Matar. In a statement over the weekend, Rushdie’s agent, Andrew Wylie noted that “Salman will likely lose one eye; the nerves in his arm were severed; and his liver was stabbed and damaged.” However, in his post shared to social media, Zafar Rushdie has offered a further update on his father’s condition – stating that the 75-year-old writer was “able to say a few words” after being taken off the ventilator. “Though his life changing injuries are severe, his usual feisty & defiant sense of humour remains intact,” the statement continues. “We are so grateful to all the audience members who bravely leapt to his defence and administered first aid along with the police and doctors who have cared for him and for the outpouring of love and support from around the world. We ask for continued patience and privacy as the family come together at his bedside to support and help him through this time.” Politicians, musicians and public figures across the world have expressed their support for Salman Rushdie following the attack. Taking to Twitter, U2 stated: “Prayers please for Salman… whether he’d approved or not” – alongside the video for their 2000 single ‘The Ground Beneath Her Feet’. Salman Rushdie is credited as the track’s lyricist, as the words are taken from his 1999 book of the same name. “Jill and I were shocked and saddened to learn of the vicious attack on Salman Rushdie yesterday in New York,” US President Joe Biden remarked in a statement. “We, together with all Americans and people around the world, are praying for his health and recovery. I am grateful to the first responders and the brave individuals who jumped into action to render aid to Rushdie and subdue the attacker. “Salman Rushdie—with his insight into humanity, with his unmatched sense for story, with his refusal to be intimidated or silenced—stands for essential, universal ideals. Truth. Courage. Resilience. The ability to share ideas without fear. These are the building blocks of any free and open society. And today, we reaffirm our commitment to those deeply American values in solidarity with Rushdie and all those who stand for freedom of expression.”
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