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Nazanin Ratcliffe explains how Boris Johnson cost her 4 more years in an Iranian jail!

(20 Posts)
CvD66 Fri 27-May-22 17:53:57

If you haven’t listened to Nazanin Ratcliffe on Woman’s Hour last Monday, use catch up and do listen. It is a magnificent explanation of courage of one woman in the face of a ridiculously trumped up charge. Then four and a half year ago, our third highest official in the UK, the Foreign Secretary, stated in parliament that she was teaching journalists! She wasn’t - she was on holiday visiting family. But that was all the Iranian government needed. When a significant Uk misinter says this, in parliament, it must be true. So well done, Boris Johnson - you cost this woman 4 more years in prison.
Did no one brief him - or as per normal did he ignore the briefing?
So he apologised but it took this government a further 4 plus years to do what they could have done at this point, and pay the debt owed to Iran!
Oh we love the buffoon Johnson! So efficient, effective, a great negotiator - as long as you have 4 years away from your small child and husband, to spare!

MaizieD Fri 27-May-22 18:00:10

But he got Brexit done...

Smileless2012 Fri 27-May-22 18:15:45

It's wonderful that she's home with her family and terrible that she was incarcerated for so long on trumped up charges but this is what the Iranian government does.

In 2019 3 women were arrested and charged with inciting prostitution for not wearing veils and were sentenced to 30 + years between them. Earlier in 2019 Nasarin Sotoudh was sentenced to 38 years plus 148 lashes for defending women who peacefully protested for women to have the right, to choose what to wear.

She was eventually released when money owed to Iran since the revolution in the late 1970's was re paid. Boris made a catastrophic error when he said she was teaching journalists but that is not why she was arrested, she was already in prison and that is not why she continued to be imprisoned.

If the authorities had ever genuinely believed she was a spy she'd have never been released whether the money was re paid or not.

NotSpaghetti Fri 27-May-22 18:47:15

Why didn't we protest when she was forced to sign the false confession in front of representatives of the UK??
More ammunition.

CvD66 Fri 27-May-22 18:59:43

maizieD I do hope you are being sarcastic or I will have to go on a rant about Northern Ireland protocol; huge delays at the UK borders; no EU workers to pick fruit, asparagus etc; Erasmus abolished; restricting UK musicians from EU opportunities; visas to enter EU; intelligence exchange reduced; research collaboration restricted; Cornwall loosing its generous EU grants despite promises to the contrary ... shall I go on!

CvD66 Fri 27-May-22 19:11:57

Smileless2012 please listen to the broadcast. Nazanin states that it is exactly what the government used to keep her in jail a further 4 plus years!
The UK government could have paid the debt when he made this mistake...and indeed they did finally pay that debt. At what cost to this brave, gentle woman???
Johnson alone is responsible for this gross error!

Smileless2012 Fri 27-May-22 19:30:12

I'm not disputing that they used what Boris said as an excuse, but it was an excuse and not the reason. They held her until the money was repaid.

MayBee70 Fri 27-May-22 21:42:48

So you think it’s forgivable that dear cuddly little Boris gave them the excuse?

Smileless2012 Fri 27-May-22 23:34:30

Have I said that MayBee, no. So what makes you think I think that what Boris did was forgivable?

MayBee70 Sat 28-May-22 01:02:41

So you think what he said was wrong?

Smileless2012 Sat 28-May-22 09:11:40

I've said "Boris made a catastrophic error" so yes, he was wrong.

DiamondLily Sat 28-May-22 09:18:57

She was already in prison, but Johnson made her situation a whole lot worse when he opened his mouth, without first engaging his brain.

He gave the impression she was teaching journalism, which she wasn't.

However, as with most things , money talks loudest, so she was finally freed, when we paid them an outstanding debt.

MerylStreep Sat 28-May-22 09:23:55

I listened to the interview. I might be wrong but I thought she said that very early into her incarceration they told her it was for the money. I know she did say that they told her they kidnap about 2 people a year for the money.

NotSpaghetti Sat 28-May-22 09:29:53

diamond this is what i understood but he didnt just "give the impression" that she was teaching journalists - he actually said so.

And the government representative just stood by as she was forced to sign the confession at the airport when she was on the way out.... I find that really despicable too.

Smileless2012 Sat 28-May-22 09:47:53

It's a despicable regime NotSpaghetti and what could the government representative do? If she hadn't signed, she probably wouldn't have been allowed to leave.

MaizieD Sat 28-May-22 09:54:45

CvD66

maizieD I do hope you are being sarcastic or I will have to go on a rant about Northern Ireland protocol; huge delays at the UK borders; no EU workers to pick fruit, asparagus etc; Erasmus abolished; restricting UK musicians from EU opportunities; visas to enter EU; intelligence exchange reduced; research collaboration restricted; Cornwall loosing its generous EU grants despite promises to the contrary ... shall I go on!

You should know me better by now grin

Brexit has been quite the most appalling thing that has happened to our country in my lifetime. Its consequences have been nothing but bad for us.

However hard I try I will never quite forgive the idiots who unleashed it and who support Johnson solely because he did it...

DiamondLily Sat 28-May-22 10:00:46

NotSpaghetti

diamond this is what i understood but he didnt just "give the impression" that she was teaching journalists - he actually said so.

And the government representative just stood by as she was forced to sign the confession at the airport when she was on the way out.... I find that really despicable too.

Yes, you're right. I just looked it up. Her imprisonment was due to a combination of oppressive and corrupt government in Iran, and our verbally incontinent/brainless Foreign Secretary, at the time.

Who's now PM.🙄

Callistemon21 Sat 28-May-22 10:02:54

NotSpaghetti

diamond this is what i understood but he didnt just "give the impression" that she was teaching journalists - he actually said so.

And the government representative just stood by as she was forced to sign the confession at the airport when she was on the way out.... I find that really despicable too.

The interview Emma Barnett was on BBC1 TV last week.

Nazarin is so dignified and Emma Barnett conducted an excellent interview.
Whatever Nazanin feels about Boris Johnson, she was very restrained in her comments, but quietly scathing.

If only he had been more restrained before burbling rubbish.

Yes, they told her it was for the money MerylStreep. Utterly callous. This is what that regime does.
Other countries paid ransoms for the release of their prisoners.

NotSpaghett perhaps the representative thought signing of the untrue "confession" was better to ensure her freedom.
They still could have taken her back to prison at the very last minute. A form of torture and blackmail.

We must not forget Morad Tahbaz, a wildlife conservationist and British citizen, who is still being held there. He has American nationality too.

Smileless2012 Sat 28-May-22 10:12:39

She was as you say DiamondLily incarcerated by an oppressive and corrupt regime. Not because she'd committed a crime, but to be held hostage for an outstanding debt.

Her freedom was secured when the money was paid and if it hadn't been she'd still be there, whether Boris had made his ridiculous remarks or not. I do not believe that any amount of money would have persuaded Iran to release anyone they genuinely believed was a spy.

volver Sat 28-May-22 10:28:35

Doubtless the fault lies with the Iranian government.

But the Foreign Secretary is meant to be our top diplomat, aren't they? They are expected to understand that negotiations with foreign governments are meant to be nuanced, not "They're wrong and we're right"? Even if you think that?

When Johnson said what he did it gave them the excuse. None of us have any idea what happened to Nazanin in prison, do you not think that the Iranians told her what Johnson said, and told her that they'd been right all along? Do you not think she felt abandoned by the government? In all likelihood Iran used the statement from Johnson to show their own people that they had been right all along. They used it in the negotiations. They used it to convince other countries that were siding with them that they'd been right all along.

It seems that some contributors to Social Media sites have a better grasp of foreign relations than our former Foreign Secretary.