Family's plea for Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert jailed in Iran

Kylie Moore-Gilbert has been imprisoned in Iran for nearly two years.

Kylie Moore-Gilbert has been released from an Iranian prison.

Kylie Moore-Gilbert has been released from an Iranian prison. Source: The Modern Middle East/AAP

The family of Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert say they haven't lost hope she will be released from an Iranian jail, almost two years on from her detainment.

Dr Moore-Gilbert, who lectured in Islamic studies at the University of Melbourne, was arrested at Tehran Airport on September 13, 2018 after attending a conference.

She was later convicted of espionage but denies the charges.


Her family have made a renewed appeal for her release ahead of Sunday's two-year anniversary of her incarceration.

"(It) marks two years of unimaginable pain for our family," they said in a statement issued on Friday.

"We love Kylie very much and we remain strong and far from losing hope.

"For those who also know and love Kylie, they will recognise her fortitude and strength. We know this strength remains with her throughout this ordeal."

The federal government says securing Dr Moore-Gilbert's release remains an absolute priority.

She was in July transferred to Qarchak prison, which is infamous for killings and torture.

Two weeks ago, friends and colleagues of Dr Moore-Gilbert questioned whether she had clean water, citing reports she did not have enough money to buy bottled water or suitable food.

"We continue to seek regular consular access to Dr Moore-Gilbert," Foreign Minister Marise Payne said.

"While we work hard to bring her home, our utmost priority is on her health, wellbeing and safety."

Ms Payne said "diplomatic channels" were the best way to secure the academic's freedom.

Dr Moore-Gilbert is understood to be serving a 10-year sentence.

Friends and colleagues are planning to gather in her NSW home town of Bathurst on Sunday morning and show their support by running.

They say Dr Moore-Gilbert has been doing laps of the small jail exercise yard in prison-issued slippers.

"Running with Kylie sends a message of love and support to Kylie and her family," Dr Jessie Moritz, friend and colleague from the Australian National University said.

"She may be 12,000 kilometres away, but this way she'll know that she's not alone when she runs."

2 min read
Published 11 September 2020 at 6:10pm
Source: AAP, SBS