VIDEO: Hear Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe speak to Ham&High editor from Iran jail
PUBLISHED: 15:55 25 November 2017 | UPDATED: 15:25 27 November 2017
Supporters of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe were reduced to tears at a rally in West Hampstead this morning when she joined the event on speakerphone from her Iranian jail.
I was among those to be introduced to Nazanin by her husband Richard and was overwhelmed by her strength and courage as I spoke to her on the phone.
As I told her how we were campaigning for her freedom, she said: “I cannot wait for that day.”
She said “There is so much love and support. I never thought love could be so strong. Ive never felt so close to those who have been supporting me.
“I have made so many good friends. This makes me happy and really helps me. Its been an amazing journey for me although its been really difficult for me to be in prison. I am so grateful for everybody’s love.
As I told her how she amazing she is and to stay strong and vowed to keep her name on our front page until she is home, she said: “Thank you so much, I am so grateful.”
At one point an Iranian voice interrupted the conversation, a reminder that every word she says is being monitored by her guards.
The rally on West End Green, in West Hampstead, just yards from Nazanin’s home was led by actress Emma Thompson, despite suffering from a bout of pneumonia.
The actress addressed the crowd of local supporters carrying placards, Nazanin’s family. local MP Tulip Siddiq and the national media.
She said: “If I can get out of bed with pneumonia, Boris Johnson can get on a plane and go to Iran and get face to face with problem that has been exacerbated by his own mistakes.
Nazanin was sentenced to five years in jail on general charges of plotting against the Iranian state. She had been arrested as she arrived at Tehran airport with daughter Gabriella to return home from a family holiday to visit her parents.
Charity worker Nazanin was thrown into jail and Gabriella’s passport was seized. She is now being looked after by her Iranian grandparents.
As reported in the Ham&High, her husband Richard has campaigned tirelessly for her release backed by Hampstead&Kilburn MP Tulip Siddiq.
Nazanin is facing a new court hearing on December 10 in front of the Iranian Revolutionary Court.
There have been fears that she could be imprisoned for a further five years after comments by the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, which he later apologised for, that she was “training journalists” in the country.