Page last updated at 13:09 GMT, Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Shoe thrown at Israel's chief judge

Dorit Beinish [file picture]
Dorit Beinish was knocked to the ground and her glasses were broken

A protester has thrown a shoe at Israel's highest judge, hitting her in the face.

Dorit Beinish suffered bruises to the face and had her glasses broken when an unidentified man lobbed a shoe at her from the public gallery of the court.

He was heard to shout the words "corrupt" and "traitor" as he stood up, but the man's motive is not yet clear.

Shoe throwing is a strong insult in Arab culture, and has become a popular sign of protest around the world.

The incident took place during a hearing on medical marijuana, but the attack is not believed to be linked.

Ms Beinish was knocked off her seat by the attack, and was taken to her office for treatment.

The man, later named as Pini Cohen, was arrested by court bailiffs.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, visiting Poland, telephoned Ms Beinish to express his shock at the attack.

"It's forbidden to attack the courts and unthinkable that someone would harm the president of the supreme court," news agency Agence France Presse quoted his office as saying.

Shoe throwing has become a popular form of protest since an Iraqi journalist hurled two shoes at US president George Bush in 2008.

On Tuesday, a man threw a shoe at Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir while he was making a public speech in Khartoum, but missed him.

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