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Campaigners seek £8k to tour Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe play across the country

PUBLISHED: 18:24 11 October 2017 | UPDATED: 18:34 11 October 2017

Actress Jessica Butcher during a performance of '“Looking for Mummy: Nazanin's Story' which its producers want to tour across the UK. Picture: THOMSON REUTERS FOUNDATION / CORMAC O’BRIEN

Actress Jessica Butcher during a performance of '“Looking for Mummy: Nazanin's Story' which its producers want to tour across the UK. Picture: THOMSON REUTERS FOUNDATION / CORMAC O’BRIEN

Archant

Campaigners want to raise £8,000 to tour a play about jailed mother Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe across the country.

Nazanin's husband Richard Ratcliffe speaks after a performance of the play on October 10. Picture: THOMPSON REUTERS FOUNDATION / CORMAC O’BRIENNazanin's husband Richard Ratcliffe speaks after a performance of the play on October 10. Picture: THOMPSON REUTERS FOUNDATION / CORMAC O’BRIEN

In April 2016 Nazanin was prevented from returning to the UK after a family visit to Iran after being stopped by authorities at Tehran airport.

She was later sentenced to five years for spying in a secret trial.

On Sunday, October 8 Nazanin’s husband, Richard Ratcliffe, revealed the charity worker employed by Thomson Reuters to train journalists faced three further charges of plotting to overthrow the Iranian regime, receiving money from foreign organisations and attending a demonstration outside the Islamic Republic’s London embassy.

She could now face the prospect of another 16 years behind bars separated from Richard and their three year-old daughter Gabriella.

In August Looking for Mummy: Nazanin’s Story – a play which draws on intimate letters exchanged between the 38 year-old and accountant Richard – premiered at the Edinburgh Festival.

Now the production company behind the play inspired by Richard’s campaign to free his wife want to tour it across the country to raise awareness of Nazanin’s plight.

To date the crowdfunding effort has raised £4,260 from 142 supporters, more than half its £8,000 target.

On Tuesday the play was performed in front of a packed auditorium at the Canary Wharf headquarters of Nazanin’s employer the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Speaking after watching the performance, Richard Ratcliffe said: “It’s a tough show to see. It’s just such a shock to see the whole story and be reminded of moments that were forgotten.

“The play really does justice to the core of what Nazanin has gone through,” he added.

On the ongoing campaign to free Nazanin which included a vigil in Parliament Square today he added: “When I started I thought it would take a few weeks. But you never know what you don’t know. It’s important for Nazanin that we keep going. She knows that we care.

“The campaign is partly about the battle to bring her home, but it’s also about the battle afterwards.

“The play ends on a note of redemption. It reminds me of the importance of celebrating the moments Nazanin and I have had,” he added.

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