Brexit Party MEPs including Ann Widdecombe fail to vote for EU resolution calling for Iran to release British prisoner Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe
- EU Parliament voted on resolution demanding release of dual nationals from Iran
- Brexit Party members including Anne Widdecombe and Annunziata Rees-Mogg abstained, but the vote ultimately passed
- British national Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has spent more 1,200 in an Iran jail
Brexit Party MEPs abstained on an EU Parliament resolution tonight that would demaond for Iran to release imprisoned dual EU-Iranian nationals, including Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe.
Former Conservative Minister Anne Widdecombe and Jacob Rees-Mogg’s sister Annunziata were among the 46 members who chose to avoid supporting the vote.
It was calling on Iran to unconditionally release all women who have been jailed for supporting women’s rights in the country, including those who have protested against the hijab.
The vote ultimately passed with 608 votes.
Brexit Party MEPs have abstained on an EU Parliament resolution tonight that would demaond for Iran to release imprisoned dual EU-Iranian nationals, including Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe
One of the party’s MEP’s, Belinda de Lucy, told the Parliament, sitting in Strasbourg, that it was ‘sanctions’ not ‘words’ that were needed now.
‘As Iran grows bolder in its provocations, it appears the Eu’s deal with Iran is failing in its objectives. Even it’s most important signatory, the USA, has pulled out,’ she said.
‘British citizens are the subject of kidnapping, solitary confinement, and barbarity.
‘Our citizens have become pawns in this geopolitical game, and yet the EU remains the biggest global champion of the Iran nuclear deal with cynical commercial undertones.
Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, 40, has now been held in the country’s jails for more than 1,200, with limited contact with her family and husband Richard who has campaigned devoutly for her release
‘Iran benefits from EU investment while it continues to prop up terrorist groups in the region. And while the EU rightly speaks about the human rights atrocities, what does speaking do? It’s sanctions, not words, that are needed or Iran will be emboldened further.
De Lucy also read out a list of imprisoned women’s names, among them Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe.
The 40-year-old Thomson Reuters employee has now been held in the country’s jails for more than 1,200, with limited contact with her family and husband Richard who has campaigned devoutly for her release.
Ratcliffe’s MEP Luisa Porritt also spoke to the Parliament during the plenary session, demanding more action be taken to end the ‘hostage’ situation.
Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage was not in attendance for any of the votes
‘In prison, Nataznin has often been deprived of proper medical assistance. She is no longer allowed international phone calls, and can only see her five-year-old daughter, Gabriella, once a month. This treatment is tantmamount to state hostage taking.
‘Her husband Richard has pointed out that the dominance of Brexit means her case has fallen off the UK government’s agenda.’
Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage was not in attendance for any of the votes.
The Brexit Party have been approached for a comment.