‘con­se­quences’ warn­ing over mum

South Wales Echo - - News -

FOR­EIGN Sec­re­tary Jeremy Hunt has warned Iran there will be “con­se­quences” over its treat­ment of im­pris­oned mother-of-one Nazanin Zaghar­iRat­cliffe.

Mrs Zaghari-Rat­cliffe, 40, is plan­ning to start a hunger strike on Mon­day in protest against be­ing de­nied ac­cess to a doc­tor and med­i­ca­tion.

She has been held in Iran since 2016 over spy­ing al­le­ga­tions which the UK has made clear it re­gards as base­less.

Re­spond­ing to her plans for a hunger strike, Mr Hunt told BBC Ra­dio 4’s To­day: “She is in­cred­i­bly brave. We are all think­ing of her.

“Our mes­sage to Iran is very sim­ple – do not use in­di­vid­ual in­no­cent peo­ple as pawns of diplo­matic lever­age. There will be con­se­quences for Iran and for Iran’s rep­u­ta­tion in the world. The UK is back­ing Nazanin. We will do ev­ery­thing we pos­si­bly can to get her home safely.”

Amnesty In­ter­na­tional UK’s di­rec­tor Kate Allen said: “We wel­come Jeremy Hunt’s con­cern for Nazanin and again urge the Gov­ern­ment to do ev­ery­thing it can to avert the need for her to em­bark on the per­ilous course of a hunger strike next week.

“Most of all though, the UK needs to re­it­er­ate its in­sis­tence that Nazanin is a char­ity worker not a crim­i­nal, and the Ira­nian author­i­ties need to ac­cept this and re­lease her.”

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