- Evening Standard
- Richard Ratcliffe, husband of a British woman imprisoned in Iran, urges Boris Johnson to “solve this mess” he created in a devastating letter published in the Evening Standard.
- Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s husband attacks the foreign secretary’s “strange reluctance” to apologise for his false claim that his wife was in Iran to teach journalism when he was arrested.
LONDON -The husband of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has written a letter to Boris Johnson telling him to “solve the mess” and take responsibility for “prolonging” his wife’s suffering.
In a letter addressed to the foreign secretary published in Monday’s edition of the Evening Standard, Richard Ratcliffe says his wife “faces a longer sentence because of your [Johnson’s] words.”
Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested in Tehran last March, and since then has been in prison while the Foreign Office, which Johnson leads, tries to secure her release.
This month Johnson made the false claim that Zaghari-Ratcliffe was in Iran to teach journalism when she was arrested, and his words are being used against her as evidence as she faces five years being added to her sentence.
— George Osborne (@George_Osborne) November 13, 2017
“Your mistake in saying that Nazanin was in Iran training journalists – as opposed to the reality: that she was there on holiday with our daughter Gabriella, visiting her family – has raised the stakes for my wife,” Ratcliffe writes to Johnson.
“Your words are being used against her by Tehran to rationalise her imprisonment and as grounds for a new court case against her…
“The net effect of that is that she is in danger. I want you to solve this mess created in your name.”
He says his wife is “angry” and has “lost control of her emotions because she has lost all control over her life… She cried over the coverage… She feels on the verge of a nervous breakdown.”
He added that his wife had been taken to hospital over the weekend because she had found lumps in her breasts which were believed to have been caused by stress.
“She is reliant on her husband to know what he is doing and on her Government to know what he is doing – the jury is out there. Certainly the Government has refused to acknowledge its role in the gravity of Nazanin’s situation,” he adds.
Ratcliffe attacks Johnson for his “strange reluctance” to apologise for his false claim and urges the government to “take responsibility for Nazanin’s suffering.
Johnson, who is under pressure to resign over the Zaghari-Ratcliffe case, had a phone call with her husband in which he said he was “deeply sorry for Nazanin’s suffering,” Ratcliffe revealed over the weekend.