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Iran Denies Involvement But Justifies Salman Rushdie Attack

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) An Iranian government official denied on Monday that Tehran was mixed up in assault on author Salman Rushdie, though he justified the stabbing in remarks that represented the Islamic Republics first public comments on the attack.

The comments by Nasser Kanaani, the spokesman of Irans Foreign Ministry, came a lot more than two days following the attack on Rushdie in NY. The writer has been removed a ventilator and is on the path to recovery, in accordance with his agent.

However, Iran has denied undertaking other operations abroad targeting dissidents in the years because the countrys 1979 Islamic Revolution, despite prosecutors and Western governments attributing such attacks back again to Tehran. Even though Iran hasnt centered on the writer recently, a decades-old fatwa demanding his killing still stands.

Concerning the attack against Salman Rushdie in the us, we dont consider anyone deserving reproach, blame as well as condemnation, aside from (Rushdie) himself and his supporters, Kanaani said.

In this regard, no-one can blame the Islamic Republic of Iran, he added. We think that the insults made and the support he received was an insult against followers of most religions.

Rushdie, 75, was stabbed Friday while attending a meeting in western NY. He suffered a damaged liver and severed nerves within an arm and a watch, his agent Andrew Wylie said. Rushdie was more likely to lose the injured eye.

His assailant, 24-year-old Hadi Matar, has pleaded not liable to charges stemming from the attack through his lawyer.

Author Salman Rushdie is tended to after he was attacked during a lecture, on Aug. 12, 2022, at the Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, N.Y., about 75 miles (120 km) south of Buffalo.
Author Salman Rushdie is tended to after he was attacked throughout a lecture, on Aug. 12, 2022, at the Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, N.Y., about 75 miles (120 km) south of Buffalo.

AP Photo/Joshua Goodman

Rushdie has for a lot more than 30 years faced death threats for The Satanic Verses. Irans late Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini had issued a fatwa, or Islamic edict, demanding his death. A semiofficial Iranian foundation had set up a bounty of over $3 million for the writer, though it has yet to provide any touch upon the attack.

Police in NY have offered no motive yet for the attack, though District Attorney Jason Schmidt alluded to the bounty on Rushdie in arguing against bail throughout a hearing Saturday.

Even though this court were to create a million dollars bail, we stand a risk that bail could possibly be met, Schmidt said.

Matar was created in the usa to parents who emigrated from Yaroun in southern Lebanon close to the Israeli border, based on the villages mayor. Flags of the Iranian-backed Shiite militant group Hezbollah, alongside portraits of Hezbollah and Iranian leaders, hang over the village. Israel also offers bombarded Hezbollah positions near there previously.

In Yaroun, village records show Matar holds Lebanese citizenship and is defined as a Shiite, the official there said. The state, who spoke on condition of anonymity out of security concerns, said Matars father still lives there but has been around seclusion because the attack.

In his remarks Monday, Kanaani added that Iran didn’t have any information a lot more than what the American media has reported. He also implied that Rushdie brought the attack on himself.

Salman Rushdie exposed himself to popular anger and fury through insulting the sacredness of Islam and crossing the red lines of over 1.5 billion Muslims and in addition red lines of followers of most divine religions, Kanaani said.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, without directly blaming Tehran for the attack on Rushdie, made a spot to say Iran in a statement early Monday praising the writers efforts in supporting freedom of expression and religion.

Iranian state institutions have incited violence against Rushdie for generations, and state-affiliated media recently gloated concerning the attempt on his life, Blinken said. That is despicable.

NY Gov. Kathy Hochul condemned the attack on Rushdie at a lecture Sunday, saying a man with a knife cannot silence a guy with a pen.

Khomeini, in illness within the last year of his life following the grinding, stalemated 1980s Iran-Iraq war had decimated the countrys economy, issued the fatwa on Rushdie in 1989. The Islamic edict came amid a violent uproar in the Muslim world on the novel, which some seen as blasphemously making suggestions on the Prophet Muhammads life.

While fatwas could be revised or revoked, Irans current Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei who took over after Khomeini hasn’t done so. As recently as February 2017, Khamenei said: The decree is really as Imam Khomeini issued.

Since 1979, Iran has targeted dissidents abroad in attacks. Tensions with the West specially the USA have spiked since then-President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled America out of Irans nuclear cope with world powers in 2018.

Other denials from the Foreign Ministry have included Tehrans transfer of weapons to Yemens Houthi rebels amid that countrys long civil war. Independent experts, Western nations and U.N. experts have traced weapon components back again to Iran.

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Associated Press writer Bassem Mroue in Beirut contributed to the report.

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Follow Jon Gambrell on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jongambrellAP.

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