While accepting the Geneva accord and the forced one-step-retreat from the nuclear projects brought along extensive crises for the clerical regime, its leaders are attempting to eclipse these crises by once again emphasizing on the death sentence for Salman Rushdie in the 25th anniversary of this fatwa.
Mullah Ahmad Khatami, member of the Assembly of Experts and a close associate of Khamenei, in the Tehran Friday prayer called the death decree for Rushdie a “historical fatwa”. He said: “The important thing is that this fatwa is as fresh as ever for the Muslims and faithful Muslims are looking for an opportunity to implement Imam’s fatwa.” Considering the circumstances where the fatwa was issued he said: “It was exactly after the acceptance of resolution 598. Our enemies thought that with the acceptance of the resolution, Imam has retreated from his principles. Then this incident happened and showed to the world that the revered Imam has not retreated one iota from his principles.” Mullah Khatami underscored that even if Salman Rushdie repents, it will not affect the sentence. (Mashregh state-run website, February 14)
Mullah Olama, Khamenei’s representative in Kermanshah said: “…this historical fatwa revived the world of Islam. Since the issuance of this historic fatwa, Salman Rushdie has been living in very harsh condition that imposes a hefty expense on Britain to hide and protect him.” (Tasnim news agency, affiliated with the terrorist Qods Force, February 14)
Hassan Rouhani, mullahs’ regime new President, has also reiterated and supported the fatwa for killing Salman Rushdie on many occasions. In 2009 he commented: “We say this is the duty of Muslims. And this duty is determined by God, and this is not only Iran’s view but all Muslim scholars have also asserted this fatwa.… Its overseers are all Muslims, whose duty it is to carry out the order if it is within their power.”
Elsewhere he has also stated: “Even if Salman Rushdie is killed, the fight is not over, but will begin at other points and on various other issues; similar to our description of the freedom of political parties or women’s rights that is different from their (West’s) interpretation. The fight is the fight of two cultures.” (Islamic Political Thought, Volume 3)
In replicating Khomeini, Khamenei has once again raised the issue of this criminal fatwa in a failed attempt to overshadow the incurable crises of his regime that is engulfed in crises.