News ID: 323466
Published: 0336 GMT August 13, 2022

Only a coincidence?

Only a coincidence?

Salman Rushdie, the author of the book, ‘The Satanic Verses’, was stabbed during a speech at the Chautauqua Institution in western New York State and immediately transported to a hospital. Sources close to this anti-Islam writer claimed that Rushdie has not been able to talk following his surgery and may lose vision in one eye. The New York Police Department has identified the arrested assailant as 24-year-old Hadi Matar from New Jersey, but his motivation is not clear yet.

It is not unlikely to see this assassination attempt somehow connected to Tehran in the media, citing Imam Khomeini’s fatwa in 1989. It will be another piece to the puzzle that has been partially solved following the report of an alleged plot to assassinate former White House national security adviser John Bolton. Case in point, the BBC Persian network sought to introduce Matar as biased toward Iran and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Justice charged an Iranian citizen named Shahram Poursafi with a plot to murder Bolton. Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani brushed it aside as yet another “baseless fiction”.

The sequence of allegations leveled against Iran has raised questions including whether there is a connection between these works of fiction and the nuclear negotiations.

During the latest round of nuclear talks, a draft was prepared and submitted to the capitals to be decided after deliberations. The possibility of reaching agreements in the coming days has prompted speculations that the opponents of the agreement within the U.S. and Israel have plotted these developments. After the allegation of an assassination attempt at Bolton’s life was published, some Republicans exerted pressure on the U.S. government to break off the negotiations.

Adviser to Iran’s negotiating delegation in Vienna Seyyed Mohammad Marandi has echoed the same speculation and maintained that he will not “shed a tear” for the author that has had “endless hatred and contempt for Muslims and Islam”.

Marandi tweeted, “But, isn’t it odd that as we near a potential nuclear deal, the U.S. makes claims about a hit on Bolton... and then this happens?”

Abbas Abdi, a political analyst and a regular critic of the incumbent Iranian administration, also wrote on Twitter, “I cannot believe that the news of plotting for the assassination of Bolton and Salman Rushdie coincided at random with the JCPOA revival talks drawing to a close.”

It is not anything new to see the JCPOA opponents in the U.S. exert pressure. But their success in influencing Washington’s decision to return to the JCPOA depends on how much they have infiltrated Biden’s administration and whether the administration can withstand their pressure.



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