Iran group raises Rushdie bounty

June 18, 2007 at 3:12 PM
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TEHRAN, June 18 (UPI) -- A non-governmental organization in Iran is offering $150,000 for the death of author Salman Rushdie.

Forouz Raja'ee-Far, secretary general of the Headquarters for Honoring the Martyrs of Islam World Movement, said the former $100,000 prize for carrying out the execution ordered by Imam Khomeini in 1989 has now been increased to $150,000, the Fars News Agency reported Monday.

Rushdie sparked outrage in many Muslim countries with his novel "The Satanic Verses," which was seen by some as insulting to the Islamic faith and led to the fatwa issued against Rushdie on charges of blasphemy.

The bounty increase follows the Queen of England's bestowal of knighthood on the Indian-born author.

"According to Imam Khomeini's verdict, it is an obligation for all Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie even if he repents from the bottom of his heart and becomes the pious man of the time," Raja'ee-Far said.

"Also according to Imam's verdict, if a non-Muslim person can find and execute Rushdie sooner than Muslims, it will be an obligation for Muslims to provide such a person with whatever he wants as his payment or prize," he said.

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