TWO British women have been arrested in Iran and slung in a hellhole Tehran jail, it is reported.
A blogger and an academic are said to have been detained as relations between the UK and Tehran soured further.
Two British-Australian women have been arrested and jailed at the notorious Evin jail, Tehran[/caption]
The British-Australian pair were arrested separately and caged at the notorious Evin jail, The Times reports.
A woman jailed at the prison has called it a “black hole of evil”, with claims of torture and brutality from guards.
Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a 41-year-old British-Iranian mum-of one, has been held at the same jail since 2016 on spying charges.
The blogger was reportedly seized ten weeks ago as she travelled with her Australian boyfriend.
She had been posting updates of their travels on YouTube and Instagram during their three years of travelling.
But pals raised concerns when they stopped hearing updates from them a few weeks ago.
An academic also arrested in Iran had studied at Cambridge University and was now a lecturer in Australia.
She is said to be held in solitary confinement and has been sentenced to ten years in jail for an unknown offence, a source told The Times.
Prisoners say cells are filthy, overcrowded and infested with beetles, compating it to toture
Although it isn’t known what she was convicted of, foreigners are often jailed for a decade on espionage charges.
But it is believed the two Brits arrested are the first UK citizens without Iranian passports to be jailed in Iran in recent years.
Tulip Siddiq, Mrs Zaghari Ratcliffe’s Labour MP, said “This terrible news shows a clear escalation of Iran’s hostage diplomacy.
“Soft diplomatic responses to Iran’s illegal and inhumane treatment of British prisoners have been a failure.”
Soft diplomatic responses to Iran’s illegal and inhumane treatment of British prisoners have been a failure
It comes as Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, claimed a tanker seized in Gibraltar has now delivered its oil to Syria.
Mr Raab said that the Adrian Darya-1’s oil was transferred in breach of EU sanctions.
The 15,000-tonne ship was seized by a team of Royal Marines as it passed through the British territory’s waters on July 4 for trying to bust European sanctions and take oil to Syria.
Iran is preparing to release a British tanker that was seized in retaliation.
The Stena Impero was boarded in the Strait of Hormuz.
It comes after Iranian officials said some of the group would be released from the Stena Impero after seven weeks for “humanitarian reasons”.
There was no word from hardline rulers in Iran’s capital Tehran on the fate of the remaining Stena Impero crew, none of whom are British.
the Adrian Darya-1 was released on August 18 and Iran claimed it was heading for the Kalamata port in Greece, a port too small to accommodate a ship of that size.
But satellite images showed the vessel just two nautical miles off the port city of Tartus on Syria’s Mediterranean coast.
The UK’s Foreign Office said in a statement that reports about the ship’s location were “deeply troubling”, and that for Iran to renege on its assurances would be a “violation of international norms and a morally bankrupt course of action”.
The Stena Impero was seized on July 20 and footage showed balaclava-clad Iranian commandos abseil onto its deck.
Iran’s Revolutionary Guard launched a gunboat and helicopter raid on the tanker, which is registered in the UK, claiming it had turned off its tracker and ignored warnings.
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Footage showed speedboats surrounding the stricken vessel before the commandos stormed the ship.
British warship HMS Montrose sped to help the tanker Iran but arrived ten minutes too late.
In response Boris Johnson ordered the Royal Navy to accompany all British-flagged vessels through the Strait of Hormuz.
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