Iraq celebrates shoe thrower's release

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Muntadhar al-Zaidi
Baghdad, Sep 11: Muntadhar al-Zaidi, the Iraqi television reporter, who threw shoes at former US President George W Bush was released on Monday, Sep 7, and would now use  his iconic status to promote humanitarian causes, reported his family.

"My understanding is that al-Zaidi might quit his work as a journalist because he is sure that he will be turned away or boycotted by government officials," his brother Dargham said.

"Rather, he told me he is interested in working in a humanitarian organization or becoming an activist for woman's and orphans' rights."

His brother added that Zaidi declined offers to join politics.

However, parties, music and celebration would be greeting Zaidi as his act of protest of hurling shoes at Bush in Dec 2008, expressed Iraq's bitterness against US occupation.

In March 2009, Al-Zaidi was sentenced to three-years in prison. But it was reduced due to his good behaviour and as he had no prior records.

Al-Zaidi now seems would use his celebrity stature for people's welfare and quit journalism.

His employer, Al-Baghdadiya TV, was ready to take him back and would stand by him.

Meanwhile, his office was getting ready to welcome him.

Colleagues were hanging pictures, including one showing Al-Zeidi flinging open a jail cell door and stepping out along with a pair of doves.

His gesture inspired many Internet games and T-shirts and some people also offered him their daughters' hands.

It was reported that a Saudi man wanted to pay $10 million for one of the shoes.

But his shoes were destroyed during investigation.

OneIndia News

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