This is an amazing reaction.
This Wednesday, Hadi Matar, accused of having stabbed writer Salman Rushdie, said he was "surprised" that the author of "Satanic Verses" survived the attack, perpetrated Friday during a conference in the New York State.
A statement made to the New York Post, which contacted him in prison.
The suspect, arrested immediately after the assault, pleaded not guilty to attempted murder on Saturday and is due to appear in court again on Friday.
'Salman Rushdie ran for his life': New eyewitness accounts of attack
Asked about the subject, Hadi Matar, 24, did not say if he had been inspired by the fatwa issued by Ayatollah Khomeini in 1989 from Iran, calling for the death of Salman Rushdie, for his "Verses satanic”, considered blasphemous.
“I have esteem for the Ayatollah.
I think he's a remarkable person.
That's all I would say about it, ”he assured the New York tabloid, who writes that the young American's lawyers advised him not to talk about this subject.
He also assured that he was not in contact with the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and that he had learned of the presence of Salman Rushdie at a conference at a cultural center in Chautauqua, in northwestern New York State. , via Twitter.
" I do not like him "
Hadi Matar told the newspaper that he read "a few pages" of "Satanic Verses".
“I don't like this person.
I don't think he's a good man,” the suspect told the New York Post about the perpetrator.
“I don't like him, I really don't like him.
(…) He is someone who attacked Islam,” he added.
Watching videos of the author on YouTube, he found him "hypocritical", he continued.
Originally from the state of New Jersey, he told the American media that he took the bus to the city of Buffalo, then a Lyft – competitor of Uber and taxis – to get to Chautauqua.
“I wasn't doing anything in particular, I was just walking around,” he explained, “I was just outside all the time,” he said.
Read alsoAllegiance to the Iranian regime, Hezbollah … the first elements on Hadi Matar, the assailant of Salman Rushdie
Hadi Matar returned "changed" and more religious from a 2018 trip to Lebanon, his family's country of origin, his mother told the Daily Mail website on Monday.
Salman Rushdie, 75, stabbed a dozen times and evacuated by helicopter to a hospital, was briefly placed on a ventilator before his condition improved.
“The road to recovery has begun,” his agent said on Sunday.