Monday, June 18, 2007

Britain's knighthood to the author Salman Rushdie contributes to insulting Islam and may lead to terrorism, a Pakistani minister has said

BBC News:

Such actions are the root cause of terrorism, Religious Affairs Minister Ejaz-ul-Haq told parliament.

The minister later said he had not meant to condone or incite terrorism but stress its origins.

Pakistan's parliament has condemned the knighthood. Iran says it shows 'Islamophobia' among British officials.

Mr ul-Haq was speaking during a session of Pakistan's National Assembly in which it unanimously condemned Britain's award of a knighthood to the author Salman Rushdie and demanded it be withdrawn.

His comments in the Urdu language caused uproar.

"If someone commits suicide bombing to protect the honour of the Prophet Mohammad, his act is justified," he said, according to the translation by the Reuters news agency.

"If Britain doesn't withdraw the award, all Muslim countries should break off diplomatic relations."

Opponents accused Mr ul-Haq of inciting violence.

Later he returned to the floor of the assembly and said his remarks were not meant to be a justification of suicide attacks.

Mr ul-Haq is a well known Islamic hardliner. He is the son of former President Zia ul-Haq who carried out a process of 'Islamisation' in Pakistan before dying in a plane crash in 1988.

The resolution passed by the lower house of parliament said that honouring Salman Rushdie "hurt Muslim sentiments".

Sir Salman's book The Satanic Verses sparked protests by Muslims around the world and led to Iran issuing a fatwa in 1989, ordering his execution.

Iran also criticised the knighthood, saying praising the "apostate" showed Islamophobia among British officials.

A spokesman for the British High Commission in Islamabad would not comment on the parliamentary resolution, but he said the knighthood was a reflection of Mr Rushdie's contribution to literature throughout a long and diverse career.

Like Iran, Pakistan is an Islamic republic with an overwhelmingly Muslim population which saw violent protests against The Satanic Verses in 1989.

Pakistan's parliamentary affairs minister Sher Afgan Khan Niazi, who proposed the resolution, said the knighthood would "encourage people to commit blasphemy against the Prophet Mohammad".

Sir Salman, 59, was one of almost 950 people to appear on the Queen's Birthday Honours list, which is aimed at recognising outstanding achievement.

The controversial Indian-born author's fourth book - The Satanic Verses in 1988 - describes a cosmic battle between good and evil and combines fantasy, philosophy and farce.

It was immediately condemned by the Islamic world because of its perceived blasphemous depiction of the prophet Muhammad.

It was banned in many countries with large Muslim communities and in 1989, Ayatollah Khomeini, Iran's spiritual leader, issued a fatwa.

In 1998, the Iranian government said it would no longer support the fatwa, but some groups have said it is irrevocable.

The following year, Sir Salman returned to public life.

Of his knighthood for services to literature, Rushdie said: "I am thrilled and humbled to receive this great honour, and am very grateful that my work has been recognised in this way."

Students burn effigies of UK's queen

Salman Rushdie's knighthood 'deplorable'

Pakistan/Iran: Muslims Condemn Rushdie's Knighthood


At 10:22 PM, Blogger Young Fogey said...

Whilst I have no particular interest in Sir Salman’s novels I am pleased to see him honoured as his knighthood demonstrates that whilst honouring our own we will not be intimidated or influenced by outside political pressures.

It is of course ludicrous to claim that this honour is “an obvious example of fighting against Islam by high-ranking British officials.” Were this true we would not have seen a 2005 knighthood bestowed by The Queen upon Sir Iqbal Sacranie, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, described by The Guardian as the “Most Influential Muslim in the UK”.

Rather than criticise the British government, Iran should congratulate Britain for having recently raised a number of British Muslims to the highest ranks of British Society as members of the House of Lords. These include Lord Ahmed of Rotherham, the first Muslim peer; Lord Patel of Blackburn, leader of the British Hajj Delegation; Baroness Falkner of Margravine; and Baroness Uddin of Bethnal Green. See my blog for more:

At 3:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has anyone noticed the similarity between Dame Jade Goody and Sir Salmon?

Both have brought a lot of money to media interests, both get death threats, both induce burning protests in ex-colonies, both went to elite universities, both get considerable coverage of what they do in public, both have interesting "partners", both have rudely challenged "sacred cows".

At 1:17 AM, Anonymous USpace said...

Good one, of course the very peaceful 'Muslims' are justified for destroying the whole world over this. What? The Queen can't knight someone she likes? She can't knight someone that other people don't like?

But I'm sure Sir Rushdie has mixed emotions on this; the Queen has put him in much greater danger. Maybe he'll wish he had turned it down.

At least this incident will lose the terrorists at least a few more of their dhimmidiot appeasers.

Islam in it's extreme is more political ideology than religion. In that way, it is only a 'Religion of Peace' in that when Islam rules the planet, there will be no one to be at war with. Where they are given an inch, they demand a mile. Islamic countries are becoming more extreme, extremists rule, they just keep quoting the Koran to justify their Jihad.

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
appease religious killers

continue to spoil them
violent tantrums pay off


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