Iraq shoe thrower jailed for three years

A Baghdad court today sentenced an Iraqi reporter who hurled his shoes at former US president George Bush to three years in prison.

Muntazer al-Zaidi worked for Al-Baghdadiya television, and earned instant worldwide fame when he threw his shoes at Bush at a news conference in December, calling him a dog.

"This sentence is harsh and is not in harmony with the law, and eventually the defence team will contest this in the appeals court," said Dhiaa al-Saadi, the head of Zaidi's defence team.

Zaidi's sister Ruqaiya burst into tears, shouting "Down with Maliki, the agent of the Americans," referring to Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.

Zaidi's brother, Uday, said the verdict was politically motivated.