British Prisoners in Iran

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 4:30 pm on 18th July 2017.

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Photo of Tulip Siddiq Tulip Siddiq Labour, Hampstead and Kilburn 4:30 pm, 18th July 2017

I beg to move,

That this House
has considered British prisoners in Iran.

It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Hollobone. Many hon. Members, and many people watching the debate across the world, will be aware in some sort of manner of my constituent Nazanin Ratcliffe. The reason I called this debate—why I think it is important to discuss the issue in the House—is that many hon. Members here and people around the world may not know the details of Nazanin’s condition and that of other such prisoners who are detained in Iran at the moment.

Nazanin Ratcliffe, her husband Richard and daughter Gabriella lived in West Hampstead until April last year. Nazanin went to work every day in a charity. On the weekends, Richard and Nazanin would take their daughter to play in a soft play area in the Sherriff Centre opposite West Hampstead tube. They would play on the swings in a park in Fortune Green, near my house. The biggest worry in their lives in the early months of last year was which school Gabriella would go to when she grew up. Their situation was not any different to many of the young families who live in my constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn.

Last year, Nazanin, a British citizen, went to Iran on holiday and took her daughter Gabriella, who was then two years old and is also a British citizen, to see Nazanin’s parents in Tehran. After two weeks, they decided to return home to London. Nazanin was detained at the airport in Tehran and the daughter was placed with the grandparents.