Brisbane Aboriginal-Sovereign Embassy (BASE) today marched through the streets of Brisbane protesting the ‘destruction of sacred sites’.
The ‘Genocidal 20’ rally began at 9 am with speeches from elders and others protesting against coal seam gas ‘fracking’, uranium mining and land degradation.
BASE participant and rally MC Paul Spearim said the G20 Leaders’ Summit this weekend is an ideal opportunity to raise awareness about land degradation.
“Today is about Indigenous and non-Indigenous people letting the world, and the rest of the Australian society, know that the destruction of our sacred sites cannot be carried on,” Mr Spearim said.
“They are taking our song, dance and stories and they are trying to say we have no song, dance and stories, it remains a part of our heart and soul,” he said
“We are trying to say you don’t need to destroy those lands for profit.
“[The G20] opens the door so [the world] can finally hear the First Nation’s people of this land’s voice and story.”
The rally marched through Edward Street and surrounds, stopping at key intersections as protesters chanted “Genocidal 20, leave our lands alone”.
Wakawaka Goreng Goreng tribe Spiritual Leader Anthony Hill said these protests are vital to get the messages of aboriginal people out to the world.
“[The rallies] will get us on TV’s around the world,” he said.
“Australia is the Silent Country and the government informs everyone about the aboriginal people overseas.”
Mr Hill said that, after 50 years of marching in the streets, he is grateful he is still able to protest.
“At 67 years old, what encourages me is the heart and conviction of the people.”
BASE will run a program throughout the week, with a Death in Custody rally on Friday before Decolonisation and Profit rallies on Saturday and Sunday.