For decades, Iran is ruled by nefarious Shiite Islamists who are sponsoring and spreading terrorist acts throughout the Middle East and the world, especially targeting Saudi Arabia, Israel, the United States and European nations. Following the gruesome stabbing attacks on celebrated novelist Salman Rushdie, despite the fact of Iranian regime has bluntly denied any link with this attack. Instead, it has blamed the writer himself.
According to BBC journalist Khosro Kalbasi: Iran media call the assassination attempt on Salam Rushdie “divine retribution”, “devil being blinded”, a “conspiracy” for derailing nuclear talks. A paper argued the attack was “NOT an attack” on freedom of speech “unlike holocaust deniers being heavily punished”.
Iran’s state broadcaster daily Jaam-e Jam highlighted the news that Rushdie might lose an eye following the attack, saying “an eye of the Satan has been blinded”.
As news emerged of August 12 attack, eyes turned to Tehran where the fatwa – religious edict – calling for the writer’s assassination was first issued more than three decades ago.
But on August 15, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesperson Nasser Kanaani – giving the country’s first official reaction – said Tehran “categorically” denied any link, adding “no-one has the right to accuse the Islamic Republic of Iran”.
However, he said freedom of speech did not justify Mr Rushdie insulting religion in his writing.
“In this attack, we do not consider anyone other than Salman Rushdie and his supporters worthy of blame and even condemnation”, the spokesman said during his weekly press conference in Tehran.
“By insulting the sacred matters of Islam and crossing the red lines of more than 1.5 billion Muslims and all followers of the divine religions, Salman Rushdie has exposed himself to the anger and rage of the people”.
Iran had no other information about Rushdie’s assailant except what has appeared in media, he added.
A spokesman for UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said it was “ludicrous” to suggest Salman Rushdie was in any way to blame for the attack, adding it “was not just an attack on him, it was an attack on the right to free speech and expression”.
Earlier, the UK’s shadow foreign secretary David Lammy had pressed the government to urgently put diplomatic pressure on Iran to apologies and withdraw the “truly sickening” comments.
Antony Blinken had earlier denounced Iran’s state institutions for inciting violence against the author. In a statement, Blinken said, Salman Rushdie had “consistently stood up for the universal rights of freedom of expression, freedom of religion or belief, and freedom of the press”.
While law enforcement officials continue to investigate the attack, I am reminded of the pernicious forces that seek to undermine these rights, including through hate speech and incitement to violence.
“Specifically, Iranian state institutions have incited violence against Rushdie for generations, and state-affiliated media recently gloated about the attempt on his life. This is despicable”.
Blinken added the US and its partners would use “every appropriate tool” at their disposal to stand up to what he called “these threats”.
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