Cake, Knitting … and Human Rights

It was a celebration of crafting and human rights as knitters from across south Wales gathered to cast on, sew and raise awareness of the plight of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe. In the week that the foreign office warned British-Iranians against travelling to Iran, the injustice of Nazanin’s position was brought home to everyone. A minute’s silence was also held for Aras Amira, a dual national British Council worker, sentenced in Iran for allegedly ‘spying’ on behalf of the British government.

Amnesty Cardiff members Knit for Naz at Pettigrew Tea Rooms, Cardiff. May 2019Joined by members of Nazanin’s close family and others from the Free Nazanin Campaign, the event was a heartfelt remembrance of Naz’s suffering following her arrest in April 2016. But fortified by endless cups of tea, delicious cake and the company of friends, both old and new, the evening was anything but a sombre affair. And this is down to your support!

The ‘Knit for Naz’ campaign has proved a runaway success; we have received messages of support and knitting from across the country. There are just too many people and groups to thank individually so we hope that this blog post conveys our deep gratitude to everyone who is taking part in this action. We are truly grateful for your encouragement and solidarity.

Church Strettom Amnesty Group
Church Stretton Amnesty Group Knitting for Naz

Speaking on behalf of the Free Nazanin Campaign, Becca Ratcliffe, Nazanin’s sister-in-law, provided an update on Nazanin and Gabriella current predicament. In spite of being granted diplomatic status, the situation had not improved and Nazanin’s physical and mental health remains fragile.

Becca thanked all the knitters from around the UK for their incredible support on the ‘Knit for Naz’ campaign. She also explained what it meant to Richard, Nazanin’s husband, to know that there were so many kind people thinking of his family.

Amnesty Cardiff members Knit for Naz at Pettigrew Tea Rooms, Cardiff. May 2019On behalf of Cardiff Amnesty, we also want to extend a huge vote of thanks to everyone who has contributed links to Naz’s ‘chain of care’. This has been an action unlike any other. As you can see for the photographs the chain is now over 30 metres long and still growing. That’s nearly 100 foot in old money!


The ‘Knit for Naz’ campaign is a timely reminder of the power of collective action. But the job is not done yet. The next task is to make the chain as visible as possible to inspire others to make a diffrence. Please don’t stop showing your support for Nazanin and her daughter Gabriella by highlighting their plight and sending us ideas as to how we might use the chain to publicise the injustice of their imprisonment.

We would also like to invite you to Stand up in the Park 2019 on Sunday 7th July where we will be unveiling the full length chain. We will shortly announcing the exciting line-up of comedians at this event, so watch this space!

Amnesty Cardiff members Knit for Naz at Pettigrew Tea Rooms, Cardiff. May 2019Special thanks must be extended to our friends at the Pettigrew Tea Rooms for allowing Cardiff Amnesty the use of their wonderful cake-filled emporium, and to our amazingly talented photographer Natasha Hirst. You can read Natasha’s blog here.

To get involved or to learn more contact Owen at


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