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Journalist Who Threw Shoes at Bush Asks for Pardon

The jailed journalist who threw his shoes at President Bush has asked for a pardon, a spokesman for Iraq's prime minister said Thursday.

In a letter delivered to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, the journalist described his behavior as "an ugly act" and asked to be pardoned, spokesman Yassin Majid told The Associated Press.

Majid confirmed to FOX News that Muntadhar al-Zeidi has asked the Iraqi president for a pardon, and expressed "regret and sorrow" for his behavior.

"It is too late to now to regret the big and ugly act that I perpetrated," al-Zeidi wrote, according to Majid.

Majid told the AP that al-Zeidi went on in the letter to recall an interview he conducted with the prime minister in 2005 when al-Maliki invited him into his home, saying: "Come in, it is your home too."

"So I ask for your pardon," al-Zeidi wrote, Majid said.

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Majid told FOX News that al-Maliki, who tried to shelter Bush from the incoming shoes with his arm, is inclined to let Iraqi law run its course.

Al-Maliki rarely allows emotions to guide his decisions, Majid told FOX News, but added the prime minister needs time to consider a pardon and has not made his final decision.

Al-Maliki was standing next to Bush at the Sunday news conference where the journalist threw his shoes.

Al-Zeidi, a correspondent for an Iraqi-owned television station based in Cairo, Egypt, could face two years' imprisonment for insulting a foreign leader.

When he threw the shoes, he shouted at Bush in Arabic, "This is your farewell kiss, you dog! This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq." Al-Zeidi was tackled to the ground by Iraqi and U.S. security after throwing his shoes at Bush, who deftly ducked.

He remained in custody Thursday night.

An investigative judge visited al-Zeidi in his jail cell earlier this week and the family was told to return to court next week, according to the journalist's brother, Dhargham al-Zeidi.

Dhargham al-Zeidi claims his brother was severely beaten after being taken into custody.

However, Iraqi officials and another brother have denied that the journalist suffered severe injuries.

Thousands took to the streets in Iraq to protest al-Zeidi's arrest, and his actions were heralded across the Arab world as news stations repeatedly showed footage of the shoe-throwing incident.

Iraq's parliament erupted into chaos Wednesday when lawmakers argued over the jailing of al-Zeidi and the hot-tempered parliament speaker, Mahmoud al-Mashhadani, said he was resigning.

It is unclear if al-Mashhadani, who has a history of erratic behavior and threatening to step down from his role as speaker, intended to actually leave his post. But he appeared at the legislature on Thursday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.