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Bush shoe-thrower apologizes to Iraqi PM
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An Iraqi journalist who hurled his shoes at US President George W. Bush apologized to Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki for embarrassing him before the watching world, the prime minister's office said yesterday.

TV reporter Muntazer al-Zaidi shot to instant fame when he called Bush a "dog" in Arabic at a joint news conference with Maliki in Baghdad last Sunday and threw both his shoes at Bush in a gesture that is a deep insult in the Arab world.

"Zaidi said in his letter that his big ugly act cannot be excused," said Yasin Majeed, Maliki's media adviser.

Majeed said that Zaidi added: "But I remember in the summer of 2005, I interviewed your Excellency and you told me, 'Come in, this is your house.' And so I appeal to your fatherly feelings to forgive me."

Zaidi was brought before an investigatory judge on Tuesday and admitted "aggression against a president," a crime that could carry a 15-year sentence, judicial officials said. He could face trial soon on the charge.

Zaidi's attorney says more than 1,000 lawyers have offered to defend him.

(China Daily December 19, 2008)

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