Two British-Australians, one Australian detained in Iran

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By Rachael Kennedy
Two British-Australians, one Australian detained in Iran

Two of the three Australian nationals detained in Iran have been named as travel bloggers who were arrested during their globe-trotting adventure to drive from Australia to London.

Mark Firkan and Jolie King, the latter of whom has a British passport, were reportedly detained 10 weeks ago.

Their families released a brief statement via the Australian government on Wednesday that said: "Our families hope to see Mark and Jolie safely home as soon as possible."

It went on to ask for privacy and said no further comments would be made.

Jolie King and Mark Firkan were arrested 10 weeks ago

The third person to be arrested, an Australian-British lecturer, has been given a 10-year sentence for unknown charges and is currently being held in solitary confinement, according to The Times.

Her name has not been released.

While the two cases are not believed to be related, all three are said to be held at Evin jail in Tehran, the same facility where 41-year-old British-Iranian woman Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has been imprisoned since 2016 for espionage.

UK business minister Andrea Leadsom told Sky News on Wednesday that she found the arrests "extremely concerning", adding that "the UK will do everything we can to support any UK British citizens who are caught in Iran".

The latest round of detentions come as tensions between Iran and the West remain particularly high over a recent dispute over oil tankers, and the reintroduction of crippling economic sanctions on Iran after the US withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal last May.