Rushdie Honor Sparks Furor

Novelist's knighthood prompts uproar from some corners of the Muslim world
By J. Kelman,  Newser User
Posted Jun 18, 2007 1:05 PM CDT
Pakistan's religious students burn effigies of Queen Elizabeth II and author Salman Rushdie condemning the knighthood award to Rushdie in Multan, Pakistan, Sunday, June 17, 2007. Pakistani lawmakers...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Pakistan wants Britain to revoke Salman Rushdie's just-granted knighthood—and the UK should prepare for suicide attacks if it doesn't, a Pakistani cabinet minister said today. "If someone exploded a bomb on his body he would be right to do so unless the British government apologizes and withdraws the 'sir' title," the minister of religious affairs told Pakistan’s parliament.

The queen granted knighthood to the controversial novelist Saturday, sparking a wave of protests in the Muslim world, much of which views the honor as a final insult from Tony Blair. Iran described the move as an act of "confrontation," calling Rushie—whose portrayal of Muhammad in 1988's Satanic Verses prompted a fatwa calling for his assassination—one of "most hated figures in Islamic society."