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UK: British-Iranian detainee’s husband on hunger strike at Iranian Embassy in London

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The husband of jailed British-Iranian journalist Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was on the eleventh day of a hunger strike outside the Iranian Embassy in London on Tuesday, to join his wife’s pleas for release from the Tehran jail where she is being held on espionage charges.

British-Iranian journalist Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested in April 2016 and given a five-year sentence on espionage charges. Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested at a Tehran airport as she was flying back to London with her daughter Gabriella after visiting relatives. Since then, her husband has tried without success to contact Iranian authorities and appeal to the UK government to secure his wife’s release.

“She’s gone on a hunger strike because she complains about being unfairly imprisoned and is appealing to the Iranian authorities and to British authorities to work a way to find her and to bring her home,” Ratcliffe said.

Ratcliffe said that the response from the Iranian authorities has not been positive so far. “They’ve threatened her, added an extra sentence to make sure she’ll serve her whole sentence.” He added that the next UK Prime Minister has to “take responsibility for her case and for protecting British citizens.”

In March, UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt granted Zaghari-Ratcliffe diplomatic protection, but Tehran has refused to acknowledge her dual nationality.

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