A hundred MPs back husband’s call to Boris Johnson to free Hampstead mum Nazanin
PUBLISHED: 12:52 24 October 2016 | UPDATED: 20:33 24 October 2016
The husband of West Hampstead mum Nazanin Ratcliffe has won the backing of more than 100 British politicians in calling for foreign secretary Boris Johnson to secure her release from a five-year jail sentence in Iran.
Richard Ratcliffe has gathered the signatures from 115 MPs and peers on a letter to be delivered to the Foreign Office today.
It calls for the release of his wife Nazanin, 37, who was sentenced to five years in jail in Tehran without specific charges on unspecified “national security” related offences.
As reported in the Ham&High, Nazanin and daughter Gabriella, now two, were seized at the airport in Tehran as they tried to return home from a family holiday in April.
Nazaning was thrown in jail while Gabriella’s passport was seized leaving her trapped in Iran and being looked after by her grandparents.
The letter also calls for the release of another Anglo-Iranian dual national Kamal Foroughi 77,who is serving his sixth year of an eight-year jail sentence and Brtitish citizen Roya Nobakht.
They will then hand in an Amnesty International petition with 72,000 signatures calling for their release to Downing Street and hold a demonstration in Whitehall.
Mr Ratcliffe said: “Boris Johnson needs to make sure these two cases are right near the top of his in-tray. We can’t let this drop.”
“The letter calls for the government to use the recently restored relations with Iran to seek their immediate release. It highlights the very strong health and humanitarian grounds for their release, as well as concerns about the standards of their trial.
The letter has been signed by MPs and Peers from all political parties.
Richard Ratcliffe said: “I am proud that I was able to tell Nazanin yesterday that today is happening. With the UN’s intervention, and now with this support, I hope that some momentum is finally building for all of us.
“Two hundred days without Nazanin and Gabriella has been a long time for our family. I cannot imagine what 1,000 or even 2,000 days feels like for the other families. My hope I hope that as the government moves forwards with trade deals with Iran it does not forget about our families. I hope it makes clear to the Iranian authorities that they need to come home. Families come first.”
Tulip Siddiq MP said: “The Secretary and Prime Minister must act now to help these British prisoners locked up abroad. The government should be raising the case through every channel it has with Iran. Sadly, very little seems to be happening. The message to Boris is clear.”
As reported in the Ham&High on October 13 Richard’s tireless campaigning gained a boost when the United Nations working group on arbitrary detention called on Iran to immediately release and compensate Nazanin.