Rushdie's book “The Satanic Verses” was banned in Iran where the late Supreme Leader Ruhollah Khomeini issued a 1989 fatwa, or edict, calling for the author's death.

Salman Rushdie, 75, was stabbed on Friday while attending an event in western New York.
Salman Rushdie, 75, was stabbed on Friday while attending an event in western New York. (Reuters Archive)

An Iranian government official has denied that Tehran was involved in the assault on author Salman Rushdie, in remarks that were the country's first public comments on the attack. 

Nasser Kanaani, the spokesman of Iran’s Foreign Ministry, made the remarks in a briefing to journalists on Monday.

“We, in the incident of the attack on Salman Rushdie in the US, do not consider that anyone deserves blame and accusations except him and his supporters,” Kanaani said.

 “Nobody has right to accuse Iran in this regard.”

Rushdie, 75, was stabbed on Friday while attending an event in western New York. 

He suffered a damaged liver and severed nerves in an arm and an eye, his agent said. 

He was likely to lose the injured eye.

Death threats

His assailant, 24-year-old Hadi Matar, has pleaded not guilty to charges stemming from the attack through his lawyer.

The award-winning author for more than 30 years has faced death threats for his book “The Satanic Verses”, which was condemned across the Muslim world.

Iran's late Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini had issued a fatwa, or an edict, demanding his death. 

An Iranian foundation had put up a bounty of over $3 million for the author.

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Source: AP