Iran accuses writer Salman Rushdie and his supporters of stabbing

 Iran accuses writer Salman Rushdie and his supporters of stabbing

Iran has "categorically" denied any involvement with Salman Rushdie's assailant and has placed the blame squarely on the author.

During a performance in New York state, Mr. Rushdie, 75, was stabbed on stage and suffered serious injuries. He can now breathe on his own.

Because of his 1988 book The Satanic Verses, he has endured years of death threats.

Prior to this, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken referred to Iran's state media's actions as "despicable" for bragging about the attack.

The attack has received widespread commentary in Iranian media, which has dubbed it "divine punishment."

An eye of the Devil has been blinded, according to Iran's official news outlet Jaam-e Jam, which highlighted the news that Rushdie would lose an eye as a result of the attack.

Eyes were focused on Tehran, where the fatwa, or religious decree, that initially called for the writer's murder more than three decades ago, as news of the incident on Friday spread.
However, on Monday, Nasser Kanaani, a spokesman for Iran's foreign ministry, stated that Tehran "categorically" denied any connection and added that "no one has the authority to accuse the Islamic Republic of Iran."

However, he asserted that the right to free expression did not excuse Mr. Rushdie from disparaging religion in his writing.
During his weekly press conference in Tehran, the spokesman declared, "We do not consider anyone other than Salman Rushdie and his supporters worthy of blame and even condemnation in this incident."

Salman Rushdie "has exposed himself to the fury and rage of the people by insulting the sacred things of Islam and breaking the red lines of more than 1.5 billion Muslims and all followers of the heavenly religions."

Additional than what had been reported in the media, Iran had no other knowledge about Rushdie's attacker, he continued.
It is "ludicrous," according to a spokesman for UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, to suggest that the attack on author Salman Rushdie had anything to do with it. 

The spokesman also noted that the attack "was not just an attack on him; it was an attack on the right to free speech and expression."
David Lammy, the UK's shadow foreign secretary, earlier urged the administration to encourage Iran diplomatically to retract the "really horrible" remarks and issue an apology.

Earlier, Mr. Blinken had criticized Iran's government for encouraging violence against the author.

Mr. Rushdie has "consistently stood up for the universal rights of freedom of expression, freedom of religion or belief, and freedom of the press," he claimed in a statement.

I am reminded of the evil forces that work to restrict fundamental rights, especially through hate speech and violent instigation, as law enforcement officers look into the attack.
"In particular, Iranian official institutions have long encouraged violence against Rushdie, and recently state-affiliated media celebrated the assassination attempt on him. This is disgusting.
In order to counter what he called "these dangers," Mr. Blinken added, the US and its allies would employ "every relevant tool" at their disposal.

Although the author's life-altering injuries are severe, his son noted that Mr. Rushdie's "normal feisty and defiant sense of humor is intact" despite his very grave condition.
When Mr. Rushdie was taken off a ventilator on Saturday, the family was "very relieved," he said, adding that his father was able to "speak a few things."
The renowned novelist had severed nerves in one arm, liver damage, and would probably lose an eye, according to Andrew Wylie, the author's agent.

Hadi Matar, 24, the man accused of carrying out the attack on Friday, has entered a not guilty plea to the charges of attempted murder and assault. In the face, neck, and abdomen of Mr. Rushdie, he is suspected of stabbing him at least ten times while he was running onto the stage.

After The Satanic Verses was released in 1988, the novelist was compelled to go into hiding for almost ten years. Many Muslims responded angrily to it, claiming that the Prophet Muhammad's representation was a serious insult to their faith.

Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the then-leader of Iran, issued a fatwa calling for Mr. Rushdie's murder and set a $3 million (£2.5 million) bounty on the author's head. Mr. Rushdie received death threats.
The fatwa is still in effect, and despite Iran's government's distance from it, a semi-official Iranian religious body increased the award by $500,000 in 2012.

tags : Salman Rushdie,Antony Blinken,Iran,United States
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