Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s husband submits evidence of wife’s torture to United Nations

PUBLISHED: 11:01 14 February 2018 | UPDATED: 11:01 14 February 2018

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe with husband Richard Ratcliffe and daughter Gabriella. Picture: RICHARD RATCLIFFE

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe with husband Richard Ratcliffe and daughter Gabriella. Picture: RICHARD RATCLIFFE


The husband of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has presented evidence to the United Nations that the cruel treatment his wife has suffered in an Iranian jail amounts to torture.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, husband Richard Ratcliffe and newborn baby Gabriella in West Hampstead. Picture: RICHARD RATCLIFFENazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, husband Richard Ratcliffe and newborn baby Gabriella in West Hampstead. Picture: RICHARD RATCLIFFE

Richard Ratcliffe said: “We have passed the threshold where Nazanin’s treatment is torture. Ongoing games remain a kind of psychological torture with continual ups and downs and pressures impacting on Nazanin.”

Key claims in the submission sent on Tuesday are that the level of psychological abuse in Nazanin’s case meets UN torture criteria particularly given her vulnerability as a mother.

A second claim states her abuse is not just down to pressures inflicted by her interrogators, or the poor conditions of her detention, but that her abuse has been coordinated with the use of the court system, Iranian TV news and consular services to assert control over her daughter Gabriella and Nazanin’s access to her family. A third claim is that Nazanin is being held as a bargaining chip in ongoing political battles that have nothing to do with the family with court proceedings, propaganda and promises of release being used to exert diplomatic pressure.

Mr Ratcliffe has also asked the UN special rapporteur on torture to pursue Nazanin’s case with the British and Iranian governments calling on them to respect their obligations to protect his wife and “find a way to bring her home”.

On the submission’s timing Richard said it has long been evident Nazanin’s treatment met the threshold for consideration as torture but the invention of a second court case and “extreme” propaganda marking her out as an important person for the UK had made the move more important now.

The toll on her health as well as dashed hopes of release and broken promises her case had been dropped are also having a significant impact on Nazanin according to Mr Ratcliffe.

Nazanin’s huhsband reported Nazanin continues to experience “darkly negative feelings” and bouts of anger. She struggles to be in company, struggles for an appetite and struggles to put on any weight, he said.

Nazanin and Gabriella were seized in Tehran in April 2016 as they tried to return home from a family holiday. Nazanin was sentenced to five years in jail on charges of plotting against the state, which she denies. Gabriella remains with family in Iran.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories


If you’ve been enjoying Hampstead Heath this summer, you may have come across an unusual slab of concrete amongst the greenery.


A couple were violently assaulted, with one of them suffering a bleed on the brain, after challenging a man urinating in Fairfax Road in June,


Aaron Breslauer, 14, has combined his love of mountain climbing with raising £2,000.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Six year old Camden schoolgirl Lily Conlan has been shortlisted for a prestigious campaigning award for her work to promote deaf awareness.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Users of St John’s Wood Post Office have raised concerns about the proposed branch move to Charlbert Street.

Friday, August 17, 2018

It’s unlikely anyone testing the water at Hampstead Heath’s many ponds expected their checks for bugs like E.coli would ever become part of a performance art project.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Paddington Academy students are celebrating achieving the best A-level results in the school’s 11-year history.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Hornsey Sixth Form College A-level results were ‘significantly above national average’, according to the headteacher of the Crouch End school.


Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now