Destinations

Australian travel bloggers Mark Firkin and Jolie King released by Iran

Christian Fleetwood

Christian Fleetwood

Australian couple and travel bloggers Mark Firkin and Jolie King are back in Australia after being released by Iran.

Australian Mark Firkin and British-Australian Jolie King were in the process of blogging their way from Australia to London when the pair was arrested after allegedly flying a drone near a military zone without a license.

They have now been released, with all charges against them dropped, after spending three months in Tehran’s Evin prison.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne told reporters: “The ordeal that they have been through is now over.

“They are being united with their loved ones, which is a source of great relief and joy to everyone.”

Minister Payne added both King and Firkin are in “good health” and “in good spirits”.

Following their release, the pair issued a statement on Saturday thanking the Australian government.

“We are extremely happy and relieved to be safely back in Australia with those we love.

“While the past few months have been very difficult, we know it has also been tough for those back home who have been worried for us.

“We are grateful for the efforts of the Australian government in helping secure our release, and we thank our family and friends for their love and support.”

Firkin and King were in the process of blogging their way through the adventure of a lifetime by driving from Australia to Britain, aiming to “break down the stigma around travelling to countries which get a bad rap in the media”.

Their adventure was cut short when the pair were arrested by security forces for allegedly launching a drone at a military area near Tehran known as Jajrood.

The couple are known for regularly using drone photography to document the beautiful, remote areas they travel through.

Drone use with a permit is allowed in Iran, but under strict conditions that include not flying over people or large crowds, over the city of Tehran or over sensitive areas. Flying a drone without a permit is punishable by six months in prison and immediate deportation.

Minister Payne reiterated Australia’s official travel advice for Iran, which advises travellers to “reconsider your need to travel” due to the risk that “foreigners, including Australians, could be arbitrarily detained or arrested”.

“Dual nationals are also at risk,” the advice reads. “We can’t guarantee access to consular services or legal representation if you’re detained or arrested.”

“It goes to show the importance of appreciating the circumstances, the laws, the conditions of the countries in which Australians travel and the importance to review those whenever you make the decision to travel,” Minister Payne said, as reported by The Guardian.

Featured image: Instagram/ thewayoverland



SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Events

Spencer Travel expo goes off with a bang!

Don’t worry, it didn’t go off with a literal bang – although fireworks are always good fun at an event.

Share

CommentComments

Midweek Interview

Midweek catch-up with Sabre’s Darren Rickey

We caught up with SVP airline global sales at Sabre, who has been living it up in Barcelona and Southern France and honestly, we’re a little offended we weren’t invited.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Airbnb officially bans parties

The Airbnb party is officially gone! Now you’ll have to get pissed in a nearby park when you go on holiday.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

TFE to bring Collection brand to Sydney

Complete with an infinity pool featuring sweeping city views, the new property is touted as a destination in itself, however, we can’t confirm that until we’re offered a free stay.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Avalon Waterways offers double Qantas Point incentive

Satisfy your point-junkie clients by scoring them four points per dollar spent on their next luxury river cruise.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Air New Zealand sets roll out date for long awaited bunk-beds in economy class

Praise the travel gods! Passengers will soon have the option to lay down in cattle class and we’re so excited we’ve decided to take our afternoon nap early.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas proposes scrapping bonuses if it is “harmed”

Qantas has copped some bad press lately, but the silver lining is it’s a great excuse for Alan Joyce to get a nice makeover!

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Boeing 737 MAX mid-air emergencies revealed in new investigation

Surprisingly the investigation came from the ABC and not from Air Crash Investigation, which kind of puts the show to shame a bit.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Western travel agents banned from booking Hajj pilgrimage

Those looking to complete Hajj will have to enter the Hajj lottery, which you are still astronomically more likely to win than the actual lottery.

Share

CommentComments

Wholesalers

Virtuoso uncovers key differences in how each generation travels

Meanwhile, Travel Weekly staff are conducting our own research to tap into the zoomer market by teaching the office dog TikTok dances. It’s not going well.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Royal Caribbean Group completes its comeback with all ships back at sea

To honour the milestone, all 63 ships in the group’s fleet sounded their horns at once, which most likely scared the sh*t out of nearby fishing boats and unsuspecting wales across the world.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Virgin teams up with Flight Centre for money-can’t-buy workshop

It’s the second time a Flight Centre partnership has come up this week and it’s only Tuesday! Skroo must be feeling extra convivial this week.

Share

CommentComments