Australian consular officials are due to again visit journalist Peter Greste as he nears a month in detention in Egypt without charge.
Australian consular officials in Egypt will meet with detained journalist Peter Greste again this week, as he marks a month in prison without charge.
The Brisbane-based parents of Australian Greste have praised diplomatic efforts made on behalf of their son, while urging top-level talks.
“It would give us no greater joy than to find that our prime minister has spoken to his counterpart in Egypt,” Juris Greste told Sky News on Monday.
Greste, 48, and two al-Jazeera English network colleagues were arrested at a Cairo hotel on December 29 on suspicion of broadcasting false news in the service of the blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood.
On Friday Greste had his detention at the high-security Tora Prison extended for another 15 days by a state prosecutor.
He has not been charged and under Egyptian law it is understood he can be held for up to two years.
“Foreign Minister (Julie) Bishop has raised Mr Greste’s case with the Egyptian ambassador, expressing our concerns and pressing for a meeting between Australia’s ambassador to Egypt and the prosecutor-general,” said a statement from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) on Monday.
The al-Jazeera network has provided lawyers for the trio and following eight meetings with Greste, the DFAT confirms the Australian is in good health.
From his solitary confinement Greste penned a letter to his parents in which he said the arrest and detention “sends a clear and unequivocal message to all journalists covering Egypt”.
“I’ve been caught in the middle of a political struggle that is not my own,” the reporter wrote.
“The state will not tolerate hearing from the Muslim Brotherhood or any other critical voices.”
Greste, usually East Africa correspondent for the global network, was due to work in Egypt for only a short time relieving a colleague.