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Now to the story...

Palm Is mayor says Beattie welcome after mourning over

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 16 February 2005

The Mayor of Palm Island says the Premier and Police Commissioner are more than welcome to open a new community centre on the Island, after a coronial inquest into the death in custody of a local man.

The opening of the newly constructed Police Citizens Youth Club is scheduled for tomorrow.

The Palm Island community is threatening to boycott the event if Mr Beattie and the Police Commissioner turn up.

Aboriginal leader Brad Foster says everyone is still grieving over the death in custody of Mulrunji Doomadgee.

Mr Beattie has questioned Mr Foster's real motives.

"There are some on the island who want to make this a political exercise, and which is why it was leaked to the media," he said.

The Mayor of Palm Island, Erykah Kyle, says it is custom and tradition not to celebrate when people die.

"All we are saying is this is our period for mourning, leave us alone so we don't show disrespect to the family," he said.

Mr Beattie says he is now uncertain if he will travel to Palm Island tomorrow.

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