Three Australians detained in Iran, says federal government

11 Septembre, 2019, 09:17 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Ttwo British Australian women and the Australian boyfriend of one of them have been jailed in Iran

Two British-Australian women and an Australian man have been detained by authorities in Iran.

"The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is providing consular assistance to the families of three Australians detained in Iran".

A file photo of Erin Jail in Tehran where the Australian women are reportedly being held.

British-Iranian national Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe is also imprisoned there after being convicted in 2016 of conspiring to topple the Iranian leadership.

Australia's foreign ministry confirmed assistance was being given to the families of the Australians being held.

The two cases are not thought to be linked. She denies the allegations.

The Times reports one of the women is an academic who studied at Cambridge University and was a lecturer in Australia.

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One of the women, a blogger who was travelling through Asia, and her Australian boyfriend were arrested about 10 weeks ago on charges which remain unclear, The Times of London reported on Wednesday.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) said three citizens - two of whom also hold United Kingdom passports - have been detained. "Due to our privacy obligations, we will not comment further", a department spokesman said in emailed comments.

While the charges against her also remain unclear, 10-year terms are routinely given in Iran for spying charges, the paper reported.

Located in northern part of capital, Evin prison is notable for keeping political prisoners, dissidents and Iranians with dual nationality accused of plotting against the government. "The security forces may be suspicious of people with British connections", it states.

Earlier this week the Australian government updated its travel advice for Iran to "reconsider your need to travel" and "do not travel" to areas near the border with Iraq and Afghanistan.

Iran's judiciary said last month that it had sentenced a British-Iranian dual national to 10 years for allegedly spying for Israel.

The arrests come amid a downturn in relations between Britain and Iran, sparked by issues including the seizure by the Royal Marines in July of an Iranian oil tanker near Gibraltar.

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