Advertisement

We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and her husband Richard Ratcliffe at a press conference in March PA
Detained

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe had to sign ‘false confession’ before being freed

The former Iranian detainee said she expects Tehran will use it against her in the future.

NAZANIN ZAGHARI-RATCLIFFE has revealed she was forced to sign a “false confession” in front of a UK Government witness before she was allowed to leave Iran.

The British-Iranian dual national said the act captured on camera by the Iranians was “dehumanising” and that she expects Tehran to use it against her in the future.

While “under duress”, she said she had to admit to the Iranians’ allegations after they detained her for six years having accused her of spying.

She and the UK have denied the charges.

She was detained on security charges by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard at Imam Khomeini airport after a holiday visit to Iran, where she introduced her daughter to her parents. 

The charity worker said she was taken to the airport by the Revolutionary Guards without seeing her parents on the day in March when she was to be freed.

“Instead I was made to sign the forced confession at the airport in the presence of the British Government,” Zaghari-Ratcliffe told the BBC.

The Iranians told her the UK had now settled a historic £400 million debt dating to the 1970s.

“They told me that ‘you won’t be able to get on the plane’. And I knew that that was like a last minute game because I knew they were… They told me that they have been given the money,” she said.

“So what is the point of making me sign a piece of paper which is incorrect? It’s a false confession.”

She told the BBC’s Emma Barnett that a British official was present at the time she signed the document.

“The whole thing of me signing the forced confession was filmed,” Zaghari-Ratcliffe added.

“It’s a tool. So I’m sure they will show that some day.”

Earlier this month, her husband Richard Ratcliffe alluded to “mistakes made at the end” of the ordeal in Iran.

Speaking after his wife’s first meeting with Prime Minister Boris Johnson since her release, Ratcliffe said: “I think there are lessons to learn, there is a wider problem.

“We talked about the mistakes made at the end. It was rough at the end, and I think, when Nazanin is ready to talk about it, that is something that we need to go through.”

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
7
This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
Leave a Comment
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.

    Leave a commentcancel