The condition of the writer Salman Rushdie, 75, was unknown Friday night after a man stabbed him in the neck while he was on stage at a New York event. He was taken to hospital by helicopter. His attacker is in police custody. His fourth book Satanic Verses published in 1988 sparked outrage among some Muslims who considered it blasphemous. Rushdie was forced to live in hiding under close guard for nine years after Iran’s revolutionary founder Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa offering a $3m bounty for his execution.