Bush shoe-thrower arrested at Iraq news conference

Last Updated: Thursday, February 24, 2011 - 18:45

Baghdad: The Iraqi journalist who shot to
fame for throwing a shoe at ex-US president George W Bush was
detained Thursday while attempting to hold a news conference in
Baghdad, a reporter said.

Muntazer al-Zaidi had been due to hold a press
conference in front of the Iraqi capital`s Abu Hanifa mosque
in the mostly-Sunni district of Adhamiyah when an Iraqi army
unit took him away.

"I have orders for you to come with me," an army
colonel told Zaidi, who initially refused, demanding to see a
written arrest warrant. He was eventually led into an army
pick-up truck along with his brother Durgan.

Durgan al-Zaidi said before the news conference
that his brother intended to add his voice to calls for a
major protest in Baghdad tomorrow.

The journalist shot to international notoriety for
hurling both his shoes at Bush during a December 2008 press
conference in Baghdad, and was eventually sentenced to three
years in prison for assaulting a head of state.

That was reduced to one year on appeal, and his
sentence was cut further for good behaviour. Zaidi alleged he
suffered electric shocks and simulated drowning while in
custody.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, February 24, 2011 - 18:45

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