Zimbabwe's ambassador to Australia has gone into hiding after applying for a protection visa.
AAP reports Jacqueline Zwambila was due to return home on Tuesday but instead appealed to the Australian government, saying her life would be in danger if she returned home.
Immigration Minister Scott Morrison said he will judge her request for asylum on its merits.
Ms Zwambila is aligned to Zimbabwe's opposition Movement for Democratic Change party. She said she knew it meant the end of her term when Robert Mugabe won elections earlier this year.