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Trial of Bush's shoe-attacker put off

world Updated: Dec 30, 2008 21:29 IST

DPA
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The trial of Montazer al-Zaidi, the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at US President George W Bush during a press conference in Baghdad has been postponed, according to court officials.

Al-Zaidi, a reporter for the Cairo-based Baghdadia channel, faces seven to 10 years behind bars if found guilty of "aggression against a president". His trial was originally set for Wednesday (Dec 31).

A spokesman for Iraq's Central Criminal Court said Tuesday that the postponement was agreed upon following an appeal by the journalist's lawyers.

According to his defence team, al-Zaidi expressed his rejection of the occupation and the policy of repression against Iraqis. Thus they regard his trial as a breach of his constitutional rights.

As such, al-Zaidi's team is seeking to either have the case thrown out or have the charges against him revised.

"The defence committee has requested the Court to change the legal description in accordance with which al-Zaydi will be tried," a member of the committee, Ahlam al-Lami, told Voices of Iraq news agency.

"We have submitted a plea for his release on bail," al-Lami added.

Al-Zaidi, 28, has been celebrated as a hero for hurling his shoes at Bush during a press conference Dec 14. The journalist also shouted in Arabic: "This is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog."