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Officials ban Post and AP from arraignment of Hadi Matar, suspect in Salman Rushdie attack

Authorities in upstate New York are barring press from attending the arraignment of Hadi Matar, the New Jersey man accused of the stabbing of writer Salman Rushdie.

Matar, 24, is scheduled to be arraigned at Chautauqua County Jail early Saturday, where he was transferred from the New York State Police barracks in Jamestown after the Friday attack.

Matar allegedly rushed the stage where Rushdie was about to give a lecture on freedom of expression at the Chautauqua Institution.

Rushdie is on a ventilator at UPMC Hamot in nearby Erie, Pennsylvania, and may lose an eye, according to reports.

A spokesman for the New York State Unified Court System told The Post that the county jail is not set up for press attendance.

“This is a town and village court,” said Lucian Chalfen. “In that county the central location happens to be the jail. It is up to the Sheriff to accommodate if he can.”

Chautauqua County Warden Matthew Stuczynski denied The Post and the Associated Press entry to the public court proceeding, citing the “safety and security and good running order of the facility.”

File source

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