The release of Australian-born academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert from an Iranian prison last month demonstrates the power of determined international pressure, in this case led by our Foreign Minister Marise Payne, applied both publicly and behind the scenes.
I am hopeful that the government's efforts in relation to Dr Moore-Gilbert will be replicated to achieve justice for 15-year-old Australian school student Malki Roth and her grieving family.
Malki, alongside 14 other innocent civilians, was murdered in a suicide bombing in downtown Jerusalem in 2001, orchestrated by Jordanian terrorist Ahlam Tamimi. Initially tried and convicted in Israel, Tamimi, who chose the target and drove the bomber to it, was released in 2011 as part of a prisoner exchange that saw hundreds of terrorists released in exchange for Gilad Shalit, a young Israeli soldier abducted by Hamas and held in solitary confinement for over five years.
In the years since her release, Tamimi has been living freely in Jordan and has become quite the celebrity, the host of a popular television program that she uses as a platform for continuing to boast about how many Jewish children she has murdered.
Since 2016, Tamimi has been the subject of a US Department of Justice arrest warrant on a charge of conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction against American nationals, including Malki Roth. By virtue of having an American-born mother, Malki had dual Australian-US citizenship.
Tamimi appears on the FBI's list of "most wanted terrorists" and the US Department of State has issued a $US5 million reward for information leading to her arrest.
But Jordan has so far refused to co-operate, despite having an extradition treaty with the US and despite having just this year deported Tamimi's husband, Nizar al-Tamimi, in an apparent and so far unsuccessful effort to encourage Ahlam to leave of her own volition.
The only explanation Jordan has offered for its non-cooperation is to question the validity of the extradition treaty. In reality, the obstruction is assumed to be based less on technicalities of international law and more on the political manoeuvring of the nation's all-powerful King Abdullah II.
In a country where more than half the population is Palestinian, there is little doubt that a decision to hand over a Palestinian-Jordanian killer of Jews to the US would prove unpopular.
Which brings us back to where we started: What can the Australian government do to obtain justice for the murder of Malki Roth? The realpolitik faced by Jordan's king hasn't deterred the Americans from pursuing justice for Malki, and it shouldn't deter the Australian government either.
Australia does not have a mechanism under international law to seek Tamimi's extradition. But we can and should support the US in its efforts. We can and should take every opportunity to advise the Jordanian government that we have neither forgotten nor forgiven the murderer of an Australian child.
And let's be clear that Australia's intervention would make a difference. It would make it easier for Jordan to comply with America's request to extradite Hamimi, citing increased international pressure. It would also encourage the incoming Biden administration to maintain pressure from their end.
The core element in Senator Abetz's detailed question was whether, in its contacts with Jordanian officials, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade had ever noted our concern that Ahlam Tamimi is feted for her role in killing 15 people in Jerusalem, including an Australian national, and "if not, why not and will it do so in the future?"
Senator Abetz went on to ask whether DFAT supported the extradition request of Ahlam Tamimi by the US, and whether department officials had expressed Australia's views to American colleagues.
This was no ordinary Dorothy Dixer.
In the case of Kylie Moore-Gilbert, an Australian citizen, wrongly imprisoned, was freed, sending a message to fellow Australians that their government will never abandon them.
While the tireless campaign for justice by Malki Roth's family and their supporters around the world will not bring her back, action by the Australian government to see her murderer tried and appropriately punished for what she did would bring them, and all who hear of it, a level of peace.
And it would send a further message to regimes that encourage and protect terrorists that if our citizens are targeted, we will not rest until the perpetrators are held to account.
- Jeremy Leibler is president of the Zionist Federation of Australia.