Shoe throwing Iraqi journalist's release from jail postponed by a day

      Iraq has postponed the release of the journalist who threw his shoe at former US President George W Bush in Baghdad last year. Iraqi television journalist Muntazer al-Zaidi will be released from prison a day later than expected, his brother said. "He called me from the prison and said 'they won't release me today, they will free me tomorrow'," The Telegraph quoted Durgham al-Zaidi, as saying in tears. Zaidi, 30, was initially sentenced to three years for assaulting a foreign head of state but had his jail time reduced to one year on appeal. He is being freed early because of good behaviour. Zaidi shouted "it is the farewell kiss, you dog," at Bush on December 14 last year, seconds before hurling his size-10 shoes at the man who ordered Iraq be invaded and occupied six-and-a-half years ago. Although Bush, who successfully ducked to avoid the speeding footwear, laughed off the attack, the incident caused massive embarrassment, to both him and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Zaidi faces the prospect of a very different life from his previous existence as a journalist for Al-Baghdadia television, a small, privately owned Cairo-based station, which has continued to pay his salary in jail. Zaidi's boss has promised the previously little-known reporter a new home as a reward for loyalty and the publicity that his actions, broadcast live across the world, generated for the station. But there is talk of plum job offers from bigger Arab networks, lavish gifts such as sports cars from businessmen, a celebrity status, and reports that Arab women from Baghdad to the Gaza Strip want his hand in marriage.

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