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Igarashi was an associate professor of comparative Islamic culture at the University of Tsukuba. He translated Ibni Sina's The Canon of Medicine by Avicenna and Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses and wrote books on Islam, including The Islamic Renaissance and Medicine and Wisdom of the East.
After Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa in 1989, calling for the death of "the author of the Satanic Verses book, which is against Islam, the Prophet and the Qur'an, and all those involved in its publication who are aware of its content", he was stabbed repeatedly in the face and arms by an unknown assailant and died. His body was found on 12 July 1991 in his office at the University of Tsukuba, Ibaraki.