Boris Johnson finally apologises for causing 'further anguish' to Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe

Michael Gove
Credit
Reuters

Boris Johnson has apologised for the "distress" he has caused Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and her family after he suggested that she was in Iran to train journalists rather than on holiday. "There's a history of British diplomats going to Iran, visiting the very prison that Nazanin is in and not getting to meet her".

During a House of Commons grilling, Mr Johnson told MPs: "The British Government has no doubt Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe was in Iran on holiday and that was the sole objective of her visit".

"It's hard to imagine such a mistake being made by an FCO official but, even if it were, the buck stops with the Foreign Secretary", said Mr Penman.

Charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, wife of Farnham's Richard Ratcliffe, has been held in Tehran since her arrest by Iran's Revolutionary Guard in April 2016.

Senior Labour MP Yvette Cooper said: "The foreign secretary has rightly and welcomingly said that the priority of everyone should be the return of a wrongly and inhumanely imprisoned mother who has been separated from her child".

Environment Secretary Michael Gove came under fire after appearing to cast doubt over her actions in the run up to her arrest.

Iranian state TV seized on his comments as an "unintended confession", prompting fears that his comments were being used by the Iranian authorities to justify her continued imprisonment.


Mr Gove, a one-time ally and friend of the Foreign Secretary, tried to shift attention away from the handling of the case, claiming there was an "effort" to blame Mr Johnson.

Asked what she was doing in Iran, Mr Gove told BBC One's The Andrew Marr Show: "I don't know".

He believes Johnson "should go to bed at night worrying about [the Zaghari-Ratcliffe] case" but instead "I think he's got his eyes on whether he's going to be Prime Minister or whether he's going to be sacked".

"One of the things I want to stress is, there is no reason why Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe should be in prison in Iran, so far as any of us know".

He doesn't believe Johnson "read the papers properly" before his comments on Zaghari-Ratcliffe and afterwards "he should have said "look, I'm really sorry" and confirmed that Zaghari-Ratcliffe visited Iran on holiday, as she has always claimed.

Bryant, a former foreign office minister, told Julia that Theresa May is like "the hostage here" because she's "so weak that she can't deal with" the chaos in her government, and "Boris Johnson is trying to release her so that he can get her job".

"The fault, of course, is with the Iranians, but the primary duty of all government is to protect its citizens and keep us safe, especially your Foreign Secretary".

Related news:

Hot News

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Sean Hannity fans boycott Keurig, but will it make a dent?
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:56
As an outcry mounted over the interview , Keurig said it would pull its Fox News ad. Meanwhile, others applauded Keurig's decision and mocked the call for a boycott .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Alpha-Male Bromance' Solidified as Trump Vows Support for 'Bloodstained' Duterte
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:54
Duterte sang a duet of the song "Ikaw" with singer Pilita Corrales during Sunday night's gala dinner at the summit in Manila . A spokesman for Duterte, however, said "there was no mention of human rights" and "no mention of extralegal killings".

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top United Kingdom parliament to get vote on final Brexit deal
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:50
Brexit Secretary announces MPs will have the right to vote down any final Brexit deal . Parliament choosing to reject the deal would not halt Brexit .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Colin Kaepernick named GQ 'Citizen of the Year'
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:48
And while the story discusses Kaepernick's supposed fight for racial justice, but it managed to get in some shots at president. Football legend Jim Brown has changed his mind about the national anthem protest, telling TMZ Sports he is "fine" with it now.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Trump nominates former pharma exec Alex Azar as health secretary
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:47
The drugmaker has drawn criticism from patient advocacy groups for price increases to one of its biggest products: insulin. Azar was president of Lilly USA, the largest affiliate of Eli Lilly & Co., until January.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Liam Miller, former Manchester United and Celtic midfielder, undergoing cancer treatment
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:46
John Hartson , who played alongside Miller at Celtic, tweeted: "My thoughts are with Liam miller and his family this morning. Friends and ex-team-mates of Liam Miller have revealed the former Celtic midfielder is battling cancer.

Lyft is going to Canada in its first worldwide launch
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:45
The city is four months late in reporting back on the first year of new ride-hailing rules introduced by Toronto city council. The company is also beginning to sign up potential drivers now in advance of its rollout of its service.

Final Fantasy XV's Noctis to Join the Tekken 7 Line-Up
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:44
Noctis is then seen summoning his Engine Blade to cut down a number of Tekken 7 opponents while also using magic. TEKKEN 7 is available for purchase now in the Americas for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PCs via STEAM.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Introducing the PlayStation VR Skyrim VR Bundle
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:43
Time to get your FUS RO DAH on, because Skyrim VR is available to pre-order now (Amazon Prime members can save 20-percent). The $449.99 PlayStation VR Skyrim Bundle is the complete bundle that has everything needed to play any PSVR game.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Forecast: Chilly Week Ahead With Some Rain
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:43
With the cloud cover and the precipitation, it will be raw and quite chilly, with highs struggling to get to the lower 40s. This afternoon clouds will stick around for much of the day with highs struggling this afternoon hitting the mid 40s.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top American Tower boosts India presence with $1.2B site deal
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:43
Further, SG&A associated with the assets is expected to be less than Rs 1 billion (approximately $10 million) for the first year. The Board has approved the execution of a share purchase agreement amongst ATC Telecom Infrastructure, the Company and ICISL.

Broadcom after rejection: 'Fully committed' to Qualcomm buyout
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:40
Broadcom quickly fired back a few hours later, saying it "remains fully committed" to buying Qualcomm. At the time, Bloomberg sources claimed that Qualcomm's board would likely reject the deal.

Samsung Galaxy A5(2018) leaked, here is what we know
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:35
It is speculated that this particular model of the A series will bag an improved camera, in comparison to its predecessors. Likewise, we know that Samsung will stick to the same pattern and launch the Galaxy A series smartphones next year too.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Mogherini hails 'historic' European Union defense pact as 23 countries sign up
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:29
Twenty-three of the EU's 28 member nations signed up to the process, known as permanent structured cooperation, or PESCO. EU diplomats told RFE/RL on condition of anonymity that Britain's decision past year to quit the bloc and U.S.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top 49ers Player Scores Emotional Touchdown Hours After Losing Newborn Son
Nov 14, 2017 - 00:29
Despite the heartbreaking loss, Goodwin took the field Sunday afternoon and helped his team beat the New York Giants . At the time, no one knew the tragic pain he and his wife, Morgan , endured during the early hours of Sunday morning.