Iranian media reportedly renew fatwa on Rushdie

Iranian media reportedly renew fatwa on Rushdie

Forty state-run Iranian media outlets have renewed the fatwa on Salman Rushdie, the Independent has reported, quoting Iranian news service the Fars News Agency.

Local news agencies have reportedly offered a new $600,000 bounty for the death of Rushdie and Fars News Agency was among the largest contributors, donating $30,000.

According to the Independent the new bounty is the “largest organised effort” to assassinate Rushdie since the fatwa was issued.

Rushdie was made the subject of a fatwa in 1988 after his controversial novel, The Satanic Verses (Viking Press), was condemned by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic. Rushdie was forced into hiding and placed under police protection.

Last year, Iran pulled out of attending the Frankfurt Book Fair in protest at Rushdie’s presence. The Iranian foreign ministry said at the time that the fair had "under the pretext of freedom of expression, invited a person who is hated in the Islamic world and create the opportunity for Salman Rushdie... to make a speech".

However, an FBF spokesperson said at the time: "...for us, freedom of expression is non-negotiable. We must not forget that Rushdie is still being threatened with death for his work."