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Queen confers knighthood on Salman Rushdie|
LONDON - Queen Elizabeth II conferred a knighthood on "The Satanic Verses" author Salman Rushdie on Wednesday, a year after the announcement of the knighthood provoked protests from the Muslim world.
Some Muslims accused Rushdie him of blasphemy in the book and Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini pronounced a death sentence on him in 1989.
"I really have no regrets about any of my work," Rushdie told reporters after being asked about "The Satanic Verses."
"This is, as I say, an honor not for any specific book but for a very long career in writing and I'm happy to see that recognized," he said.
Rushdie, 61, published his first novel, "Grimus," in 1975.
Success came with his next book, "Midnight's Children," which won the prestigious Booker Prize in 1981.
Rushdie was forced to accept round-the-clock protection after "The Satanic Verses," was published in 1988. The Iranian government withdrew the death sentence in 1998 and Rushdie has gradually returned to public life.
"It's been a long time — my first novel was published 33 years ago but I think the thing you hope to do as a writer is leave behind a shelf of interesting books and it's great just to have that work recognized," Rushdie told reporters.
He added: "At this stage ,you know, it's certainly not a day to talk about controversy, it's a day for myself and my family to celebrate this."