JK Rowling receives death threats from person who praised Rushdie’s stabbing

Harry Potter author JK Rowling received a death threat on Saturday from a Twitter user who praised the stabbing of fellow author Salman Rushdie.

Rowling had posted about Rushdie’s stabbing on Friday night, saying the incident was “awful news.” I feel very sick right now. May he be well.

She then shared a screenshot of a response from Meer Asif Aziz, who described himself as a Pakistani “student, social activist, political activist and researcher”.

Aziz replied to his message saying that the attacker, Hadi Matar, was a “revolutionary Shia fighter”. He then threatened Rowling, saying, “Don’t worry, you’re next.”

In Saturday’s post, Rowling asked Twitter for “a little support.” Aziz’s account appears to have been deactivated within hours.

Rowling added that the police were involved in the recent threat, along with others.

According to a archive of his account, Aziz previously tweeted his desire to destroy Israel and called the Jewish state, Ukraine and India “terrorist states”.

He also appears to be a supporter of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. “Dear leader, your struggle for the Islamic world will not be in vain until the younger generation stands with you,” Aziz wrote in a response to a tweet from Khamenei.

There was no immediate comment from Twitter on the incident.

This still image from video shows Hadi Matar, 24, being escorted off stage as people tend to write Salman Rushdie, center right, at the Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, New York on August 12, 2022. (AP Photo)

Rushdie was in serious condition and on a ventilator following the stabbing at a literary event in New York state on Friday.

He had been living under an effective death sentence since 1989, when Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a religious edict, or fatwa, ordering Muslims to kill the writer.

While Khomeini’s original fatwa ceased to be part of daily discourse in Iran for some time, the clerical leadership under his successor Khamenei did nothing to indicate that it was no longer valid and, on occasion , pointed out that the decree was still valid.

Matar has been charged with attempted murder and assault, prosecutors announced on Saturday.

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