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Video of alleged abuse of Aboriginal teens at Australian prison prompts investigation

Meet the Aboriginal unit Prince Harry will train with in Australia

Aboriginal soldier in the Norforce.

Aboriginal soldier in the Norforce.

During his month-long secondment with the Australian army, Prince Harry will be challenged and given an “authentic” experience – but who are the Aboriginal soldiers?

In a remote stretch of bushland in outback Australia, a force of camouflaged Aboriginal soldiers rely on their unique hunting and survival skills as they keep watch over a vast swath of territory that includes harsh desert, rugged coastline and crocodile-infested marshes.

Entrusted with surveillance and reconnaissance across much of the nation’s northern border, the mostly Aboriginal troops of Norforce, or the North-West Mobile Force, conduct patrols across a 700,000 square-mile section of northern Australia that marks the largest area of operations of any military unit in the world.

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G20 protesters burn Australian flag

Aboriginal protesters confront G20 in Brisbane, Australia, Nov 16, 2014.

Aboriginal protesters confront G20 in Brisbane, Australia, Nov 16, 2014.

by Natalie Bochenski, Brisbane Times, Nov 16, 2014

A group of protesters has burned the Australian flag as part of a G20 demonstration at the Roma Street Parklands.

The group of about 50, which gathered in Emma Miller Place in Brisbane, has been enraged by comments from Prime Minister Tony Abbott about Australia’s history.

“He refers to this country as desolate [prior to the arrival of the first fleet],” activist Wayne Wharton said.

“He welcomes the world leaders and tells them there was nothing.

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Australia: Aboriginal children removed from home ‘at gunpoint’ by heavily armed police

Australia police armedBy Tim Lamacraft, ABC News, Sept 12, 2014

Heavily armed police were used to remove Aboriginal children from their home “at gunpoint”, the New South Wales Greens say.

Greens MLC David Shoebridge is demanding the State Government explain why the officers helped Family and Community Services (FACS) workers take eight children from a house in Moree earlier this year.

Mr Shoebridge said the family was traumatised.

“[It’s a] deeply troubling story of a family that’s been woken soon after dawn,” he said.

“[They used] shields, helmets, assault rifles, the mother and father taken from their beds, shaken from their beds, handcuffed naked, children marched out at gunpoint.”

Police confirmed officers from the Barwon Local Area Command helped FACS officers execute a court warrant, saying they attended to prevent any breach of the peace or public order incident.

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Canada’s rejection of Aboriginal passport an insult of the highest degree

Australia aboriginal passportby Aboriginal Provisional Government, Intercontinental Cry, August 5, 2014

In mid-August, four young Aboriginal people [from Australia] will fly into Vancouver to begin their month long journey of meeting with the Native peoples of Turtle Island (Canada).  Secretary of the Aboriginal Provisional Government Michael Mansell (Pakana) advised Canada’s Consulate General of the delegation’s intentions to travel on Aboriginal passports. The Canadian government responded on the 4th of August, stating the delegation “Cannot enter Canada on Aboriginal passports”.

The four members of the delegation are Meriki Onus (Gunnai), Callum Clayton-Dixon (Nganyaywana), Pekeri Ruska (Goenpul) and Bogaine Skuthorpe-Spearim (Gamilaraay).

According to Melbourne based lawyer Pekeri Ruska, using Aboriginal passports would “Show Aboriginal independence from the Australian government”.

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Australia: Aboriginal Tent Embassy is Reclaiming the Black Heart of Sydney

Aboriginal tent redfern 1By Paul Gregoire, Vice, 

As you approach the Aboriginal tent embassy on the Block in Redfern, inner city Sydney, you see the sacred fire burning within a large circle marked on the ground, serving to cleanse the area. Some ten metres up from the fire, at the edge of the Block, the Aboriginal Housing Company (AHC) has erected a sign that reads: “Warning. Private Property.”
On Saturday, a group of more than 200 protesters gathered in support of the tent embassy that was established on National Sorry Day, May 26 [2014].

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Brisbane Blacks Protest British Royal Family Visit

Australia Royal Welcome 1“It is only through the Royal Family’s false and illegal claim of sovereignty over this continent that the Federal, State and Territory governments derive their authority to pass laws and enforce them.  Give back what you stole.  Our sovereignty has never been ceded!” – Wayne Wharton (Kooma) Read the rest of this entry

Northern Territory: Australian Government Asked To Leave Aboriginal Community

Sarah Keenan, Critical Legal Thinking, 05 September 2012

Aboriginals burn Australian flag during protests in 2012.

Just over five years ago, on 21 June 2007, Australia’s then prime min­is­ter John Howard announced that rates of child sex abuse in the country’s North­ern Ter­rit­ory abori­ginal com­munit­ies were so high that they con­sti­tuted a national emer­gency. Draw­ing on the fed­eral government’s con­sti­tu­tional power to over­ride Ter­rit­ory legis­la­tion, and sus­pend­ing Australia’s Racial Dis­crim­in­a­tion Act 1975, Howard led the fed­eral gov­ern­ment in rush­ing through the North­ern Ter­rit­ory National Emer­gency Response Act 2007.  Pushed through par­lia­ment in less than four weeks, there was an almost total lack of con­sulta­tion with the abori­ginal com­munit­ies that were to be affected. Read the rest of this entry

Australia: Brisbane Aboriginal Tent Embassy Evicted, 31 Arrests

Brisbane protest harks back to old rifts

Laraine Stathan and Mirand Forester, May 16, 2012

Protesters confront police as eviction of Brisbane Aboriginal Tent Embassy begins.

An Aboriginal rights protest directed at Queensland Premier Campbell Newman has marred the ceremonial opening of parliament and harked back to the state’s days of deep division.

Around 200 police surrounded Musgrave Park at South Brisbane on Wednesday to remove tent embassy protesters who had refused to make way for this weekend’s annual Greek festival.

The ugly eviction, which saw 31 people arrested, coincided with the official opening of parliament. Read the rest of this entry

Stolen Futures: Australia’s Aboriginal people reject racist laws‏

By Emma Murphy & Peter Robson, Green Left, Saturday, March 17, 2012
New legislation introduced by the federal Labor government will entrench many aspects of the Northern Territory Emergency Response, the NT intervention, for 10 years.
The Senate Community Affairs References Committee released the findings of its inquiry into the Stronger Futures in the NT Bill and related legislation on March 13. It suggests some minor amendments, but leaves the substantive content of the bill unchallenged. Read the rest of this entry