Iraqi journalist, Muntazer al-Zaidi, who made headlines in December after tossing his shoes at the then U.S. president George W Bush on his farewell visit to Bagdad, was on Tuesday released from jail.

Al-Zaidi last year in December shouted it is the farewell kiss, you dog and threw his size 10 shoes at Mr Bush during his final Baghdad press conference.

The journalist's actions made him instantly famous across the Middle East with Turkey-based shoe manufacturing firm now working overtime to meet the demand.

Hundreds of Iraqi families, and families elsewhere in the region, have named their newborns after Muntazer. Al Baghdadia TV, Zaidi's employer, which continued to pay his salary during his nine month imprisonment and hopes to have him back at work soon. Numerous other Arab television networks and newspapers have also been trying to recruit the celebrity journalist.

The 30-year-old reporter said in a prtess conference on Tuesday said he wanted an apology from the government of Nouri al-Maliki saying he was tortured in jail in the worst ways, beaten with electric cables and iron bars.

Iraqi

Iraqi reporter Muntazer al-Zaidi gestures as he speaks at a news conference upon his release from prison in Baghdad September 15, 2009. The reporter who hurled his shoes at then U.S. President George Bush was released from prison on Tuesday, his brother said. REUTERS/Mohammed Ameen
Iraqi

Iraqi reporter Muntazer al-Zaidi arrives at the Al-Baghdadya television station following his release from prison in Baghdad September 15, 2009. The reporter who hurled his shoes at then U.S. President George Bush was released from prison on Tuesday, his brother said. Muntazer al-Zaidi, whose act during a news conference last December chimed with the feelings of many Iraqis towards the former U.S. leader, was met outside the jail by parliamentarians who support his case, brother Uday al-Zaidi said. REUTERS/Mohammed Ameen