Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe 'eligible for early release'

Demonstrators hold placards before a march in support of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe the British Iranian mother who is in jail in Iran in London Did Boris Johnson broker a deal with Iran to free jailed mother Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe?
Faye Gross | 22 December, 2017, 00:53

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has been jailed in Tehran. "He's actually a lot more hopeful and that's what he told her, because on the judiciary computer there's a database that records the status of cases and it says she is eligible for release", Mr Ratcliffe told Good Morning Britain.

United Kingdom foreign secretary Boris Johnson held talks with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif earlier this month to call for the release of the mother of one on humanitarian grounds.

Iran tried to use Johnson's comments to add a further five years to Zaghari-Ratcliffe's prison sentence.

Following Johnson's visit, her new trial, which was scheduled to take place a day after the foreign secretary's trip, was cancelled.

"It doesn't mean to say she is going to get early release, but it's definitely a positive step that she has been marked eligible for early release. His [the lawyer's] estimate was within a couple of weeks". The charges appear to relate to her employment at Thomson Reuters Foundation, a charity organisation, as well as her past work as an administrative assistant on a BBC Media Action project to train young journalists.

"Last night she met with her lawyer".

Johnson met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif at the start of December to discuss Zaghari-Ratcliffe's case.

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Richard Ratcliffe said the prosecutor's deputy visited his wife in prison on Wednesday for the first time.

"I'm reasonably positive. It's not clear how good the news is, but it's definitely good news", he said.

Tulip Siddiq, Zaghari-Ratcliffe's constituency MP, said the development was "a glimmer of light at the end of a dark tunnel".

Richard Ratcliffe said he was "cautious" about the news but hoped his wife, who was arrested in 2016 during a holiday visit to show their daughter Gabriella to her parents, would be home soon.

"It has given Nazanin a real boost of positive energy, and now we wait impatiently to see what happens next".

"The lawyer is much more positive and Nazanin is much more positive".

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