IRAN denied any link with the knife attack on Sir Salman Rushdie yesterday — and blamed the writer for the horror.
Nasser Kanaani Tehran, foreign ministry spokesman for the hardline Islamist state, said freedom of speech did not justify Sir Salman insulting Islam.
He said: “In this attack, we do not consider anyone other than Salman Rushdie and his supporters worthy of blame and even condemnation.
“No-one has the right to accuse the Islamic Republic of Iran.”
Rushdie was sentenced to death in 1989 by Iran’s ruler Ayatollah Khomeini over his “blasphemous” Satanic Verses book.
He was stabbed last Friday at a New York state literary event and has since come off a ventilator.
Terror suspect Hadi Matar, 24, has denied attempted murder.
The 75-year-old author was left with liver and nerve damage and is likely to lose an eye after being stabbed at least 10 times on stage at an event in New York state.
The writer has been able to talk – and even joke – with his family after coming off a hospital ventilator.
Terror suspect Matar is accused of running onto the stage and stabbing Sir Salman repeatedly in front of hundreds of horrified literary buffs.
Cops say Matar’s social media showed his sympathy for Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard.