Dear Mr Burke,
I am writing in frustration and desperation regarding the plight of my friend Austin Mackell. Austin is a freelance journalist who has been covering the uprising in Egypt. He is facing 5-7 years in prison for doing his job. The Egyptian authorities have charged him with bribing people to strike, which is patently false, and simply disproved. He is a freelance journalist. He has no money.
I’m asking you, no, begging you to speak with our new Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Carr, and get him to intervene on Austin’s behalf. I also ask for you to push for the resettlement of Aliya Alwi, who faces the same sentence for acting as his translator.
Please lend your voice to this issue. It’s wrong for us to leave fellow Australians at the mercy of military regimes. It is wrong for us to allow anyone to be at the mercy of said regimes. Like Bahrain, but that’s a discussion for another time. Please, please help.