On July 30, 2013, the Iranian Tasnimnews website, which is close to Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), published a compilation of 493 of the "newest" fatwas issued by Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. These fatwas cover a wide range of issues, from political and cultural to religious, and include such topics as the treatment of Baha'is, trade with Israeli companies, religious purity and uncleanness, the status of women, and more.
MEMRI's examination of the compilation shows that it also includes several previously released fatwas, dating back to 2004.
It is notable that a much-discussed fatwa, which regime officials claim was issued by Khamenei and prohibits the development, possession, or use of a nuclear bomb, is not included in this compilation. The conspicuous absence of such a fatwa by Khamenei from such a compilation confirms MEMRI's argument that it does not exist; see MEMRI Inquiry and Analysis No. 825, Renewed Iran-West Nuclear Talks – Part II: Tehran Attempts to Deceive U.S. President Obama, Sec'y of State Clinton With Nonexistent Anti-Nuclear Weapons Fatwa By Supreme Leader Khamenei, April 19, 2013.
The following are some examples of the fatwas in the compilation on Tasnimnews:
"23: [What is the religious law concerning] a medication that contains alcohol?
"If someone knows that the medication contains alcohol of a type that is for [human] consumption, and it is originally liquid and intoxicating, then this medication is unclean; if he does not know [that it contains alcohol] it is pure..."
"32: [What is the religious law concerning what to do when] a sacred object falls into the toilet?
"If for example Koran chapters or an amulet containing a Koran falls into the toilet, using that toilet is forbidden [but] only to those who know for sure according to religious law [that it fell in], and he must wait until it is certain that the amulet has been effaced or destroyed [down the toilet] However, this obligation does not apply to anyone who does not know [that it fell in] and the person who dropped the amulet does not need to tell others about it, and if it this is difficult, there is no need to empty the toilet..."
"44: How should the purity prior to prayer be maintained?
"Anyone who breaks wind regularly – if he cannot preserve his purity from before prayers to after prayers, and if it is very difficult for him to re-purify himself during prayer – it is sufficient for him to purify himself once for each prayer..."
"112: [What is the religious law concerning] laughing during prayers?
"Laughing out loud [during prayer] – if it is intentional, it cancels out the prayer..."
"245: [Is it permitted] to defraud a non-Muslim in commerce?
"Telling a lie or committing fraud or forgery in commercial relations are forbidden, even if the other party is not a Muslim..."
"260: [On] associating with Baha'is:
"One should refrain from any kind of association with this misguided and misleading cult."
Some Fatwas Were Released Previously
MEMRI's examination of the compilation of fatwas shows that some of them were released previously, for example:
"7: What must be done in the event that scholars' opinions contradict each other? (This fatwa was published previously on June 6, 2009, on Khamenei's website.)
"If several qualified scholars do not agree regarding a certain fatwa, caution dictates that the most learned [of them] be imitated."
"472: [Is it permitted] for a woman to dance before her husband? (This fatwa was published previously, but with no date, on Khamenei's website; however, an Iranian website quoted from it on January 16, 2011.)
"A woman may dance before her husband provided it is not accompanied by prohibited activity [that is, forbidden music or singing]."
"473: [Is it permitted] to establish centers for learning dances? (This fatwa was published previously, but with no date, on Khamenei's website; it was quoted by the Parto-e Sokhan weekly, which is identified with Ayatollah Mohammad Mesbah Taqi Yazdi on October 14, 2004.)
"Establishing centers for the learning and the spreading of dances contradicts the aims of the Islamic regime, and is forbidden."