Emotional moment Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe hugs her daughter after 2173 days ‘of hell’ in Iran

Video shows British-Iranian aid worker bursting into tears as she embraces family after touching down on UK soil

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe's daughter runs to hug her mother in airport reunion

This is the emotional moment Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe broke down in tears as she hugged her seven-year-old daughter just minutes after arriving back on British soil.

The aid worker touched down at RAF Brize Norton alongside fellow British-Iranian detainee Anoosheh Ashoori shortly after 1am on Thursday, bringing her 2173 days “of hell” in Tehran to an end.

In video footage shared live on Instagram by Mr Ashoori’s daughter Elika, Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s young daughter Gabriella can be heard asking “is that Mummy?” before shouting “Mummy” as the pair walk down the steps of the plane.

Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe is out of shot but can be heard sobbing as her daughter runs towards her as she enters the room where her husband Richard Ratcliffe is also eagerly awaiting her return at the air base in Oxfordshire.

Mr Ashoori can also be seen tearfully reuniting with his wife Sherry Izadi and children Elika and Aryan before Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe appears in the video.

She embraces each of Mr Ashoori’s family members in turn before crouching to hug and kiss her daughter asking “do I smell nice”.

Earlier footage showed the mother, wearing a navy dress and coat with a bright yellow shawl and matching handbag, waving to the cameras while Mr Ashoori gave a salute and peace sign as they walked from the plane to the airport building.

British-Iranian aid worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe hugs her seven-year-old daughter Gabriella as she arrives in the UK after being detained in Iran for six years

Mr Ashoori appeared to have been taking photos with the pilots in the cockpit on the plane as they waited to disembark.

In a message shared online, the Zaghari-Ratcliffe family said: “No place like home. Thank you to everyone who made this possible, to all of the care and campaigning, and diplomatic efforts. You have made us whole.”

Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s local MP Tulip Siddiq posted a picture on Twitter of her constituent apparently on the plane home.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe reunites with her husband Richard Ratcliffe and their daughter Gabriella after she touches down at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire

The Hampstead and Kilburn MP wrote: “It’s been 6 long years – and I can’t believe I can FINALLY share this photo.

“Nazanin is now in the air flying away from 6 years of hell in Iran.

“My heart goes out to Gabriella and Richard, as her long journey back home to them gets closer by the minute.”

Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe, whose husband has long campaigned for her release, left Iran alongside Mr Ashoori on Wednesday morning after their release was secured.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe smiles and waves at cameras while fellow British-Iranian detainee Anoosheh Ashoori gives the peace sign after they arrive at RAF Brize Norton shortly after 1am

Her ordeal began after she visited the country in mid-March 2016 to spend time with family members for Nowruz (New Year), only to be detained on her way home at Imam Khomeini Airport on 3 April 2016.

Her daughter Gabriella, then just 22 months old, was left in the care of her maternal grandparents living in Iran, only returning to the UK to be reunited with her father in October 2019.

She was accused by the Iranian authorities plotting to overthrow the Iranian government.

Mr Ashoori, who was arrested in August 2017 while visiting his elderly mother in Tehran, was detained in Evin prison for almost five years after being accused of spying.

Both have consistently denied the allegations.

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