The families of two British-Iranian dual-nationals jailed in Iran are calling on the UK government to do more to secure their release.
Richard Ratcliffe and Kamran Foroughi will hand in petitions to Downing Street and the Foreign Office on Monday on behalf of Ratcliffe’s wife, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, and Foroughi’s father, Kamal Foroughi.
Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a charity worker, was sentenced to five years in prison last month after a conviction on unspecified “national security-related” offences following a trial before a revolutionary court in the capital Tehran.
The 37-year-old from Hampstead, north-west London, was originally arrested at Tehran airport on 3 April along with her then 22-month-old daughter Gabriella.
On Monday Ratcliffe and Kamran Foroughi will take a 72,000-signature Amnesty petition to the Foreign Office asking the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, to prioritise Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s case as well as that of fellow UK-Iranian dual-national Kamal Foroughi.
Kamal Foroughi, a 77-year-old oil and gas company consultant, is serving the sixth year of an eight-year jail sentence after being convicted of espionage and possessing alcohol. He was originally detained in May 2011 and under Iranian law has long been eligible for conditional release after serving more than a third of his sentence.
Kamal Foroughi will have spent exactly 2,000 days behind bars on Monday and his son and supporters will also be handing in a Change.org petition to Downing Street calling on Theresa May to act on the case.
Amnesty International UK’s Individuals At Risk campaign manager, Kathy Voss, said: “There’s been a lot of talk recently about ‘thawing relations’ between the UK and Iran, but these two cases lend the lie to that. It looks very much like Nazanin and Kamal are being treated like pawns by the Iranian authorities and we’d like to see the UK seriously raising its game over securing proper justice for these British nationals. Boris Johnson needs to make sure these two cases are right near the top of his in-tray. We can’t let this drop.”
Source: The guardian