Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe Granted Temporary Release, Raising Hopes of Freedom

By Rahul Verma, News Editor 24 Aug 2018
Credit: Free Nazanin

British-Iranian dual national Nazanin Zaghary-Ratcliffe who has been detained for 872 days in Iran, has been granted a temporary release of three days and is spending time with her four-year-old daughter, Gabriella.

On April 3 2016 Zaghary-Ratcliffe was arrested and detained by the Revolutionary Guard at Tehran Airport as she was returning home from a visit to see her parents and family with her 22-month-old daughter, Gabriella.

It is believed the charity worker was convicted of conspiring against the Iranian government and on April 24, 2017 the Supreme Court of Iran upheld Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s conviction and sentence to five years’ imprisonment.

A Breach of Her Fundamental Human Rights? Free Nazanin Campaign

Redress, a human rights organisation working to end torture and fighting for justice internationally, is working on Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s case and believes she has been and continues to be arbitrarily detained in Iran; her treatment and the conditions of her detention violate her right to be treated humanely and the prohibition of cruel and inhuman treatment; and she has been denied a fair trial.

Redress has filed a complaint to the UN’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention that Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s fundamental human rights have been breached.

The UN’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, falls under the jurisdiction of the Office of the High Commissioner, United Nations Human Rights (OHCHR), and its principle focus is:

“To investigate cases of deprivation of liberty imposed arbitrarily or otherwise inconsistently with the relevant international standards set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights or in the relevant international legal instruments accepted by the States concerned.”

In October 2017, the OHCHR agreed with Redress’s findings and called for Zaghary-Ratcliffe’s immediate release.

“We consider that Ms. Zaghari-Ratcliffe has been arbitrarily deprived of her liberty and that her right to a fair trial before an independent and impartial tribunal has been violated. These are flagrant violations of Iran’s obligations under international law,” said Mr. José Antonio Guevara Bermúdez, Chair-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and Ms. Asma Jahangir, Special Rapporteur on human rights in Iran in a joint statement.

British Foreign Secretary Describes Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s Imprisonment As ‘A Gross Injustice’

Nazanin’s husband Richard Zaghari-Ratcliffe is hopeful the end of the ordeal is in sight.

The internationally recognised framework of fundamental rights is enabling the Free Nazanin campaign, Redress, UK government and UN to call for Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s release.

Yesterday, Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, called for Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s permanent release, “She should not be in prison in the first place. She is innocent… Frankly everyday she is in prison is a reminder to the whole world of a gross injustice.”

Hopefully it’s the beginning of the end. Her lawyer is hopeful.

Richard Zaghari-Ratcliffe

Following Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s temporary release yesterday her husband Richard Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who has been campaigning tirelessly through Free Nazanin, said in short video, “Hopefully it’s the beginning of the end. Her lawyer is hopeful.”

For Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s family and friends and especially her daughter, her release and return home to the UK, can’t come soon enough.

Featured image credit: Free Nazanin Campaign

About The Author

Rahul Verma News Editor

Rahul is Rights Info's News and Social Media Editor. He is an experienced reporter and editor with a passion for social justice and equality. To email Rahul, drop him a line.

Rahul is Rights Info's News and Social Media Editor. He is an experienced reporter and editor with a passion for social justice and equality. To email Rahul, drop him a line.