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Acclaimed author Salman Rushdie has been taken off a ventilator and able to talk, after he was stabbed as he was preparing to give a lecture in upstate New York. Rushdie remained hospitalized with serious injuries. Following hours of surgery, Rushdie was on a ventilator and unable to speak as of Friday evening, according to his agent, Andrew Wylie. The novelist was likely to lose an eye and had nerve damage in his arm and wounds to his liver, Wylie said in an email.

The accused attacker, 24-year-old Hadi Matar of Fairview, New Jersey, pleaded not guilty to charges of attempted murder



and assault at a court appearance on Saturday, his court-appointed lawyer, Nathaniel Barone.

Neither local nor federal authorities offered any additional details on the investigation on Saturday. Police said on Friday they had not established a motive for the attack.

Authors, activists and government officials cited Rushdie’s courage and longtime advocacy of free speech despite the risks to his own safety. President Joe Biden said in a statement that he and first lady Jill Biden were shocked and saddened by the attack.



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