Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s visit to Egypt seems to be off to a rocky start after the Iranian president was greeted by an angry mob and nearly hit in the head with a shoe while leaving a historic 1,000-year-old mosque he visited with Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.
The shoe attack was caught on video by a Turkish news agency. It’s around the 28-second mark and it appears the attacker may have hit a bodyguard, rather than Ahmadinejad.
There are conflicting reports about just who was responsible for the attack, with Bloomberg News reporting a group of four Sunni Muslims had been released on bail after pointing their shoes at the president (considered an insult), while a fifth man was responsible for the attempted shoe attack. Other reports said the would-be shoe attacker was a Syrian citizen.
Ahmadinejad’s visit to Egypt, during which he will attend an Islamic nations summit, is seen as a historic one, and an attempt to improve relations between Iran and Egypt now that Morsi is in power. Former Egypt president Hosni Mubarak was openly hostile to Iran and this is the first time an Iranian representative has visited Egypt since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.