November 12, 2017 / 10:40 AM / in a year

Britain's Gove offers support to foreign secretary over Iran comments

LONDON (Reuters) - British environment minister Michael Gove defended his colleague Boris Johnson on Sunday, saying he was doing a “great job” as foreign minister and Iran should be “in the dock” over a jailed aid worker, not him.

FILE PHOTO: Michael Gove, Britain's Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, arrives in Downing Street for a cabinet meeting in London, October 17, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay/File Photo

Asked about Johnson’s comments that supporters of Iranian-British aid worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe said could hand her a longer jail term, Gove told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show: “There is no reason, no excuse and no justification for her detention and she should be released.”

“I think that Boris is doing a great job as foreign secretary ... I think it’s plain wrong for us to try to find fault with democrats, and the real responsibility is to say to the Iranian regime: you are a serial abuser of human rights, you are the principal state sponsor of terrorism, you have blood on your hands in Syria, your responsibility is to ensure that this British citizen is at liberty.”

Reporting by Elizabeth Piper; Editing by Robin Pomeroy

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