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Indigenous people win access rights in north Qld

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 23 March 2004


The Federal Court has formally recognised the traditional rights of four Indigenous groups in the Gulf of Carpentaria.

The court acknowledged hunting, fishing and access rights to land and water from the Wellesley Islands to Burketown, Doomadgee and the Northern Territory border.

But the order is not exclusive and does not prevent mining or fishing.

Other people will still be able to use the area.

Murrandoo Yanner from the Carpentaria Land Council says he is pleased with the result.

"The decision isn't total, in that it also upholds some of the state and federal government interests," he said.

"However, they always existed as of yesterday and the day before, where the rights we won today did not exist."


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