The spokesperson of the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Marzieh Afkham, has condemned in strong terms the terrorist attack against the Charlie Hebdo journal in Paris. There is no more cynical attitude that the one of the Tehran regime.
It should be remembered that the first serious wave of Islamist terrorist attacks against those responsible for ” blasphemy against the Prophet Mohammed” were the result of Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini February 1989 fatwa calling for the assassination of Salman Rushdie, in response to his depiction of the prophet in his book “The Satanic Verses.” Here is a non-comprehensive list.
The United Kingdom was the country where violence against bookstores occurred most often and persisted the longest. Two large bookstores in Charing Cross Road, London were bombed on 9 April. In May, explosions went off in the town of High Wycombe and again in London, on Kings Road. Other bombings included one at a large London department store (Liberty’s), in connection with the Penguin Bookshop inside the store, and at the Penguin store in York. Unexploded devices were found at Penguin stores in Guildford, Nottingham, and Peterborough.
In the United States bombings of book stores included two in Berkeley, California. In New York, the office of a community newspaper, The Riverdale Press, was destroyed by firebombs, in retaliation for an editorial defending the right to read the novel, and criticizing the bookstores that pulled it from their shelves.
On 11 July 1991 Hitoshi Igarashi, the novel’s Japanese translator was stabbed to death and Ettore Capriolo, its Italian translator, was seriously wounded by assailants.
In October 1993 the novel’s Norwegian publisher, William Nygaard, was shot and seriously injured.
In Turkey, thirty-seven intellectuals and locals participating in the Pir Sultan Abdal Literary Festival died when the conference hotel in Sivas was burnt down by a mob of radical islamists. Participating in the conference was Aziz Nesin, who had previously announced that he was going to get the book translated and published. The mob demanded he be handed over for summary execution. Nesin escaped the fire and survived.
On 14 February 2006, the Iranian state news agency reported that the fatwa will remain in place permanently. In 2012, Hassan Sanei, the head of the state-funded 15 Khordad, raised the bounty on Rushdie’s head by $500,000 to $3.3million ($2million).
In February 2014 Iranian mullah Hassan Sanei said: “Surely if the sentence of the Imam had been carried out, the later insults in the form of caricatures, articles and the making of movies would not have occurred” and he proclaimed that the death fatwa against Salman Rushdie “is as fresh as ever for Muslims.”
Salman Rushdie reported that he still receives a “sort of Valentine’s card” from Iran each year on 14 February letting him know the country has not forgotten the vow to kill him.