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Officials unveil a bronze statue in honor of journalist Muntadar

al-Zeidi, who threw his shoes at President Bush, in Saddam's

home town of Tikrit in January.

 

 

Iraqi News Agency, Iraq

Shoe Thrower's Sister Laments, 'The Court Sided With Bush'

 

"In not taking his side, the court ruled against a son that represents all of Iraq. The court has instead stood by Bush - and we all know the great tragedy that this man inflicted on Iraqis. Montazer told us not to cry or feel sorrow - because he was not being judged for a dishonorable crime, but for an act that he believes in and for which he is not ashamed."

 

Translated By James Jacobson

 

March 13, 2009

 

Iraq - Iraqi News Agency - Original Article (Arabic)

A poster of Iraqi journalist Muntazer al-Zeidi and some childrens' shoes are displayed by protesters outside the Iraqi Consulate in Washington. Mar. 12.

 

BBC NEWS AUDIO: In the wake of the three-year sentence of Muntazer al-Zeidi, British journalists examine the question of whether the Iraqi courts are dictated to by the U.S., Mar. 11, 00:04:36RealVideo

The sister of the Iraqi journalist Muntadar al-Zeidi, [Doniya al-Zeidi], has expressed grief over the three year sentence imposed on him and regretted that the court didnt stand by him.

 

"Not unexpectedly, the court gave my brother a harsh sentence. But in not taking his side, the court ruled against a son that represents all of Iraq." She added, "The court has instead stood by Bush - and we all know the great tragedy that this man inflicted on Iraqis."

 

Al-Zeidi's sister continued, saying, "Montazer told us not to cry or feel sorrow - and to distribute drinks and chocolates when the sentence was handed down, because as he said, he was not being judged for a dishonorable crime, but for an act that he believes in and for which he is not ashamed."

 

A Baghdad court sentenced chivalrous Iraqi hero Muntadhar Al-Zeidi to a prison term of three years

 

By this sentence handed down by the current government's court, the heroic Al-Zeidi was punished. Meanwhile, the court failed to take note that the American government ordered the release of a U.S. soldier who admitted to having killed four innocent Iraqis.

 

Oday al-Zeidi, brother of reporter Muntadhar al-Zeidi, does

as his brother asked by handing out soda and chocolates

after Muntadhar was sentenced to three-years in prison for

assaulting a foreign leader [President Bush] and sentenced

to three years in prison in Baghdad, March 12.

 

TODAYS PROCEEDINGS

 

At 11:00am Baghdad time, the second trial hearing in the case of journalist Muntadhar Al-Zeidi got under way at the Central Criminal Court in Baghdad. Surrounded by very tight security, Al-Zeidi was transported by car to the hearing and arrived just before it began. The trial was supposed to start at 10am but began late because of the level of security.

 

The session was presided over Judge Abdel Amir Al-Hassani, who announced as the proceeding got under way that the secretariat of the Council of Ministers [the Prime Minister's office] had replied to the court's inquiry issued during the first trial hearing on February 19.

 

The question was summarized thus: Was the [surprise] visit to Iraq by U.S. President George Bush on December 14, 2009 an official visit? According to the letter received from the government, the answer was yes - the visit was official. Then al-Zeidi defense attorney Dhia al-Saadi asked for permission to speak, which was granted by the judge.

 

Dhia al-Saadi stated that under ordinance 7, which was issued by former [American] administrator of Iraq Paul Bremer, such an accusation requires the consent of the Iraqi Prime Minister. He also pointed out that under Article 130 of the Iraqi Constitution, unless modified or cancelled, ordinance 7 remains in force.

 

[Editor's Note: Article 130 of the Iraq Constitution reads: "The Iraq High Criminal Court shall continue its duties as an independent judicial body, in examining the crimes of the defunct dictatorial regime and its symbols. The Council of Representatives shall have the right to dissolve by law the Iraqi High Criminal Court after the completion of its work."]

 

Al-Saadi asked the court to approach the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, and to request an official confirmation of President Bush's comments made after the incident, in which the former president was quoted as saying, "Iraq is a democracy," and to provide the court with the statement by the former president that, "I didn't feel the least bit threatened by it," and the statement by the White House spokesman, who called the event "only natural. Al-Saadi said that if the American Embassy cannot provide us with such an official confirmation, we will be required to rely on media such as newspapers and CD-Roms that contain these remarks.

   

SEE ALSO ON THIS:

Iraqi News Agency: Shoe-Throwing Journalist Explains Anti-Bush Anger to Judge

Iraqi News Agency: The Journalist Who Lifted Iraq's New Year Spirits

Al-Iraq News, Iraq: Baghdad Bids Bush Farewell ... With a Journalist's Shoes

Al-Iraq News, Iraq: The Hero Who Made Bush's Head a 'Playground for His Shoes'

El Khabar, Algeria: Iraq Invents Weapon for Rulers that Lie 'The Nuclear Shoe'

The Daily Star, Lebanon: Bush's Record and the Shoes Heard 'Round the World

The Peoples' Daily, China: Behind the Scenes: The 'Attack of the Flying Shoes'

The Times, U.K.: Journalist Who Threw Shoes at Bush, 'Has Broken Arm and Ribs'

Guardian Unlimited, U.K.: How to Insult Bush Anywhere In the World

Financial Times, U.K.: Bush's 'Sole' is Bared

 

[Editor's Notes: After the incident last December, President Bush was quoted as saying:

 

"First of all, it's got to be one of the most weird moments of my presidency ... Here I am getting ready to answer questions from the free press in a democratic Iraq, and a guy stands up and throws his shoe. ... I'm not angry with the system. I believe that a free society is emerging, and a free society is necessary for our own security and peace. It's a way for people to draw attention. I don't know what the guy's cause was. I didn't feel the least bit threatened by it."]

 

The judge rejected Al-Saadi's request, saying that it wasn't part of defense council's original list of claims, and one of the defense attorneys the courtroom yelling objections.

 

Then the judge addressed Muntadhar Al-Zeidi and asked, "Are you guilty?"

 

As expected, Muntadhar answered, "No, I am innocent. It was a natural reaction to the crimes of the occupation."

 

The public prosecutor spoke next, and demanded that Muntadhar be sentenced in accordance with Article 223 [the Iraqi Constitution only has 139 Articles - so Article 223 is part of some another ordinance or code].

 

Then the judge said: "It's time for closing statements?" When Muntadhar was about to answer, the judge cut him off by saying:" Saying more will not be in your favor" so Muntadhar remained silent.

Posted by WORLDMEETS.US

 

Then the court team [the judge and court officials] left the room to deliberate .After twenty minutes they returned. The defense team and Muntadhar, who was surrounded by tight security, was brought back into the courtroom where the judge handed down a sentence of three years in prison for Muntadhar Al-Zedi.

 

CLICK HERE FOR ARABIC VERSION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US March 16, 2:43pm]

 

 































Above: George W. Bush's dodges a shoe at his final press conference in Iraq as president, with Iraq's prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, December 14.

—BBC NEWS VIDEO: Iraqi's rally for Bush attacker, news reporter Muntadar al-Zeidi, Dec. 15, 00:00:26RealVideo

RealVideo[LATEST NEWSWIRE PHOTOS: Shoes that made history].

Caption Says: 'A Crown for His Work'
[Het Parool, The Netherlands]





[The Times, U.K.]