“Sean Turnell should be released,” he told reporters in Sydney on Saturday.
“As it stands, the military junta is just using Sean as a chess piece.
“He remains imprisoned in Myanmar, and we continue to call for his immediate release.
“Sean was inspired by the people of Myanmar, the kindest and most hard-working people he knew. Thus, he dedicated his economic expertise to help bring investment and job opportunities to your country – to help integrate with other economies in the region and the world, to help Myanmar grow faster and stronger.”
The news of Mr Turnell’s trial comes one day after an employee of the World Health Organisation (WHO) was fatally shot in eastern Myanmar as part of a string of recent targeted killings, drawing condemnation from the UN.
Human Rights Watch says 114 people have received the death sentence – including 41 people tried in absentia – since the military coup in February 2021.