Academic freed by Iran thanks supporters

British-Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert paid tribute to her supporters and the diplomatic efforts to secure her freedom after more than two years in an Iranian jail.

A specialist in Middle East politics at the University of Melbourne, she was sentenced to 10 years in prison on espionage charges.

But she was released Wednesday (November 26) in exchange for three Iranians who had been detained abroad - according to Iran's state broadcaster.

In a statement released through Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Moore-Gilbert said:

"Thank you also to all of you who have supported me and campaigned for my freedom,"

Adding - "I came to Iran as a friend and with friendly intentions and depart Iran with those sentiments not only still intact, but strengthened."

She has denied any wrongdoing.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had spoken with her ahead of her return.

''She seems to be, in our own conversations, in quite good spirits. But I imagine there's a lot of processing of this to go through yet, and as she returns home to Australia and adjusts to life here again. So finally to you Kylie, you're amazing."

Like anyone arriving in Australia, Moore-Gilbert is required to be quarantined for two weeks in an unspecified location.

Video Transcript

- British-Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert paid tribute to her supporters and the diplomatic efforts to secure her freedom after more than two years in an Iranian jail. A specialist in Middle East politics at the University of Melbourne, she was sentenced to 10 years in prison on espionage charges. But she was released Wednesday in exchange for three Iranians who had been detained abroad-- according to Iran's state broadcaster.

In a statement released through Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Moore-Gilbert said, "Thank you also to all of you who have supported me and campaigned for my freedom." Adding-- "I came to Iran as a friend and with friendly intentions and depart Iran with those sentiments not only still intact, but strengthened." She has denied any wrongdoing. Australian prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had spoken with her ahead of her return.

SCOTT MORRISON: She seems to be, in our own conversations, in quite good spirits. But I imagine there's a lot of processing of this to go through yet, and as she returns home to Australia and adjusts to life here again. So finally to you, Kylie, you're amazing.

- Like anyone arriving in Australia, Moore-Gilbert is required to be quarantined for two weeks in an unspecified location.