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Iran denies involvement in Rushdie attack

Salman Rushdie in Nov., 2017 Associated Press/Photo by Evan Agostini, Invision, file

Iran denies involvement in Rushdie attack

Nasser Kanaani, spokesman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry, said on Monday that Iran wasn’t involved with Friday’s knife attack on author Salman Rushdie at a New York appearance. Kanaani tried to justify the attack because of the “insults made” by the author. In 1989, Iran’s late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa—an edict calling for the killing of an individual—on the author. Iran’s current Ayatollah, Ali Khamenei, has never revised or revoked that fatwa.

What’s the U.S. response? While he didn’t directly blame Iran for the attack, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Tehran “incited violence against Rushdie.” A semiofficial Iranian foundation has an outstanding reward of $3 million for anyone who kills the author. The alleged assailant in custody, 24-year-old Hadi Matar, was born in the U.S. to Lebanese parents but also holds Lebanese citizenship and is a Shiite Muslim, according to Lebanese records.

Dig deeper: Read Mark Bergin’s report from the WORLD archives about whether Muslims and Christians can unite under a shared “love of God.”

Josh Schumacher

Josh is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. He’s a graduate of World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.

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