Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, the British-Iranian mother who was imprisoned on trumped-up espionage charges has been sentenced to a further year in prison, this time being found ‘guilty’ of propaganda activities against the Iranian regime.

The charity worker was also given a one-year ban on leaving Iran.

The new charges come after the Iranian government accused Nazanin of taking part in a demonstration in London 12 years ago and giving an interview to the BBC Persian service.

Regardless of whether that is true or not, it highlights the lack of freedom Iranians have to express themselves. Iran’s dictators are well known for brutally silencing their own people who criticise the regime.

Nazanin’s husband Richard Ratcliffe confirmed the latest sentence to the BBC saying the court’s decision was a bad sign and “clearly a negotiating tactic” by the Iranian authorities – who are in the middle of discussions over the country’s nuclear activities.

Nazanin has not yet been taken to prison and she is planning to appeal the decision.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the British government “would be working very hard” to secure her release.

“I don’t think it is right that Nazanin should be sentenced to any more time in jail,” he said. “I think it is wrong she is there in the first place, and we will be working very hard to secure her release from Iran, her ability to return to her family here in the UK, just as we work for all dual national cases in Iran.

“The government will not stop, we will redouble our efforts, and we are working with our American friends on the issue as well.”

The UK is currently in talks with Iran along with France, Germany, the USA, China and Russia to negotiate the return to full compliance of the Iran nuclear deal in 2015.

The UK is not raising Iran’s disastrous human rights records or its treatment of British citizens in these negotiations, but there is no question Nazanin is being used by Iran as a pawn against the UK.

Another British-Iranian dual national, who according to the Foreign Office does not want publicity, is due to face charges on Wednesday, as is a German-Iranian dual national.

Tulip Siddiq, Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s local MP, said: “This is a terrible blow for Nazanin and her family, who have been hoping and praying that she would soon be free to come home. It is devastating to see Nazanin once again being abusively used as a bargaining chip.

“We’ve been told the government has been working behind the scenes to secure Nazanin’s release. These efforts have clearly failed and we deserve an urgent explanation from ministers about what has happened.”

The foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, said: “This is a totally inhumane and wholly unjustified decision. We continue to call on Iran to release Nazanin immediately so she can return to her family in the UK. We continue to do all we can to support her.”

Related Articles:

Israel’s FM tells CUFI: Israel grateful for unequivocal support during Gaza conflict

In a video address to the 2021 summit of Christians United for Israel, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid on Monday expressed his appreciation to the largest pro-Israel...

Watch the CUFI Summit 2021 featuring Pastor Hagee, Nikki Haley and Ted Cruz

Watch the opening plenary of CUFI’s 2021 Summit, featuring: Pastor John Hagee, CUFI founder and Chairman; former South Carolina Governor and Ambassador to the United Nations...

Tokyo becomes first Olympics to honour Israelis killed by Palestinian terrorists in 1972 Munich Massacre during opening ceremony

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games is the first Olympics to honour the memory of the eleven athletes and coaches of the Israeli Olympic Team who were murdered by Palestinian terrorists during...

Algerian judoka quits Olympics to avoid Israeli opponent

A day before the Tokyo Olympics are set to officially open, Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine reportedly pulled out of the games on Thursday in order to avoid the possibility of facing an...

Longstanding Ben & Jerry’s worker QUITS over company’s Israel decision

A graphic designer at Ben & Jerry's has quit after 21 years over the company's decision this week to stop selling in parts of Israel.Susannah Levin of New York has served Ben &...

FREE booklet:

Britain’s stand with Israel – 12 actions CUFI would like the UK to take

Become a member of CUFI and receive these 5 mini-books and exclusive lapel-pin