Albaghdadia, the TV channel where the Iraqi Journalist Montather Al-Zeidi works, reports that an Iraqi MP (Ms. Zainab Al-Kanani) informed them that Montather’s hand was broken in jail.
This confirms a lot of reports and rumors about Montather being subject to torture while the Iraqi authorities are interrogating and detaining him in some unspecified location.
Certainly, a recent report by Human Rights Watch on the Iraqi prison system suggests that torture is commonplace.
The BBC says:
A spokesman for Iraq’s High Judicial Council said that Mr Zaidi, accompanied by defence and prosecution lawyers, had been brought before the investigating judge, Reuters news agency reported.
Abdul Satar Birqadr said Mr Zaidi had been charged with aggression against a president.
“He admits the action he carried out,” the news agency quoted Mr Birqadr as saying.
Iraqi lawyers had earlier speculated that the charges could include insulting a foreign leader and the Iraqi Prime Minister, Nouri Maliki, who was standing next to President Bush during the incident.
The offence carries a maximum penalty of two years in jail.
Meanwhile, Zaidi has become a hero throughout the Arabic world. An Egyptian blogger writes:
As I said this historical moment ,Cairo today has nothing to speak about except that Iraqi reporter who threw G.W Bush ,the 43rd president of the United States of America with his shoes. The Young man became a national hero.
In less that 24 hours there are more than 10 facebook groups that support him with a fan page. All Egyptian News night shows kept showing and showing over and over the historical scene. Last night Egyptians slept feeling happy despite the terrible incident in Mania earlier yesterday and the defeat of Al Ahli club last Saturday because of that scene. The SMS are flying through the Arab world making fun 84036644 from Bush and Maliki also starting from the popular SMS in Iraq “We congratulate Mr. Bush and Maliki a pair of shoes “ to Egypt “Zalat Shoe shops congratulates the Iraqi people and has special discounts for the new collection of 2009” to the new role in the White house for the Journalists “Take off your shoes before entering the press conference !!”
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