Tags: salman rushdie | death | bounty

Salman Rushdie: Bounty for His Death Raised to $4M by Iranians

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By    |   Wednesday, 24 Feb 2016 08:05 AM

Salman Rushdie's 27-year-old death bounty has been increased to nearly $4 million after a group of Iranian hardliners raised $600,000 to mark the anniversary of the fatwa against the British novelist, reported The New York Times.

Rushdie, who was born in India, has been the target of a fatwa issued by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in 1989 calling for his death for the novel "The Satanic Verses," noted Reuters. Khomeini said the depiction of Muslim Prophet Mohammad in the book was blasphemous.

Iranian reformist President Mohammad Khatami in 1998 had tried to distance the Iranian government from the fatwa, declaring it had ended, said the Times. The country's religious leaders, though, said that it could only be removed by Khomeini, who died shortly after issuing it.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who succeeded Khatami, said in 2005 that the fatwa remained in place against Rushdie, said the Times.

The Los Angeles Times noted that other attacks have been connected with the book, including the stabbing death of Japanese translator Hitoshi Igarashi in 1991.

The new bounty coincided with an Iranian digital media exhibition last week where the money was raised, reported the Fars news agency, one of the groups participating in the event, noted the LA Times.

In 2012, there was a renewed focus on Rushdie with the anti-Islam film "Innocence of Muslims" that the author himself has called "a malevolent piece of garbage," according to The Guardian. The film, which Rushdie is not associated with, has led to protests in the Middle East and North Africa.

Hassan Sanei, who leads the Iranian-funded 15 Khordad, told the Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA) in 2012 that he believed the failure to kill Rushdie two decades ago was at the root of the film's work, said The Guardian.

"Surely if the sentence of the Imam (Ayatollah Khomeini) had been carried out, the later insults in the form of caricatures, articles and the making of movies would not have occurred," Sanei told ISNA.

At that time, Rushdie's bounty was increased to a total of $3.3 million, according to Reuters.

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Salman Rushdie's 27-year-old death bounty has been increased to nearly $4 million after a group of Iranian hardliners raised $600,000 to mark the anniversary of the fatwa against the British novelist.
salman rushdie, death, bounty
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2016-05-24
Wednesday, 24 Feb 2016 08:05 AM
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