Iran frees captives held for 5, 6 years

Nazanin Ratcliffe, photo via Facebook.

Today, Iranian authorities freed two British-Iranian nationals imprisoned in the country for five and six years. One captive, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, was arrested in 2016. The other captive, Anoosheh Ashoori, was arrested in 2017. Nazanin was a project manager for Thompson Reuters Foundation when she was arrested, and Anoosheh was a businessman.

Iranian authorities accused Nazanin of trying to “overthrow” the country’s government. She denied the charge. The authorities accused Anoosheh of “spying for Israel’s Mossad” and “acquiring illegitimate wealth”. He denied both charges.

When Nazanin was imprisoned, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard blindfolded and interrogated her, and left her in solitary confinement. Last year, a report said she suffered major depression and PTSD. A foreign secretary said Iran’s treatment of Nazanin “amounts to torture”. Nazanin has a daughter who is seven years old, who was an infant when her mother was arrested.

When Anoosheh was imprisoned, authorities forced him to sign ‘confessions’ while he was sleep deprived, according to Amnesty International. His wife claims he tried to kill himself twice, and went on a 17-day hunger strike. He has now written a piece in The Guardian about his experience.

“I have to stop the feeling of pure rage or of self-pity. Break isn’t a choice; only survival”.

A BBC report from early today said the two are on their way home to the UK.


SOURCE: The Guardian | BBC | BBC | BBC

Iran frees captives held for 5, 6 years | News by Thaiger

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.