United Kingdom foreign secretary to meet husband of British woman jailed in Iran

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson arrives at a European Union foreign ministers meeting in Brussels Belgium

The meeting will also discuss concerns about Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe's health and Mr Johnson's plan to travel to Iran before the end of the year.

They say she was there with her young daughter visiting her family. I do apologise, and of course I retract any suggestion that she was there in a professional capacity'.

Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe, 38, was arrested in Tehran in April last year and sentenced to five years' imprisonment for working against the Iranian regime, a charge she denies.

A Foreign Office statement said the pair will meet to discuss Mr Ratcliffe's request to give his wife "diplomatic protection" - which, under worldwide law, allows a state to take diplomatic action on behalf of a national. She is now being detained in Iran after being convicted of "spying".

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She claimed his recent comments to the foreign affairs select committee had made Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe's situation worse by suggesting that she had been there to train journalists.

Downing Street confirmed that the Foreign Office is looking into the possible use of the status after Richard Ratcliffe spoke with the Foreign Secretary by phone at the weekend. There are also fears she is developing cancer after finding lumps in her breasts.

Johnson's Tehran visit, expected in the next few weeks, had originally been conceived as a marker of strengthening Anglo-Iranian relations after signing the Iran nuclear deal, but without a breakthrough ahead of his visit, the meetings with Iranian officials are likely to be dominated by the issue of her release.

The foreign secretary has sought advice from officials to determine whether conferring the status could help, including what impact it would have on the support provided and the representations being made on Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe's behalf, according to the United Kingdom government.

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Johnson said on November 1 that she had been teaching people journalism before her arrest in April 2016, contradicting her and her employer, who said she had been on holiday visiting her family.

Mr Ratcliffe, an accountant from Hampstead in North London, said he had spoken to his wife yesterday. Her mood has become uncontrollable.

'She expressed anger at the guards, but also at the Foreign Secretary, that it had become such a shambles.

Mr Ratcliffe said Mr Johnson had told him he was "deeply sorry for Nazanin's suffering", but did not say if the Foreign Secretary had made a personal apology for his blunder.

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Asked if he would make the trip to visit the dual British-Iranian national, he replied "of course", adding there were "obvious humanitarian grounds" for Nazanin's release.

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