Iraq shoe-thrower's brother says he'd do it again

The Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at US President George W. Bush says he would do it again and that he was forced to write a letter of apology after being tortured in jail, the journalist's brother claimed Monday. Muntadhar al-Zeidi's outburst during a December 14 news conference with Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has been repeatedly broadcast worldwide, making him a symbol for opponents of the US-led invasion and occupation of Iraq. Thousands of Iraqis have rallied to demand his release. Zeidi's trial on charges of assaulting a foreign leader is to begin December 31, said Abdul-Sattar Bayrkdar, a spokesman for the Iraqi Higher Judicial Court. A conviction could bring up to two years in prison. The prime minister's office said last week that Zeidi had written a letter of apology and asked Maliki to recommend a pardon. But his brother, Uday al-Zeidi, told The Associated Press that the letter was written against the journalist's will.