Australian Aborigines preparing for Canberra sit-in

Sydney Forum and Canberra Poster



Indigenous people from all over Australia are being called to a gathering in the capital, Canberra, on 26 January to formulate demands to the national parliament. The date is celebrated by white Australians as “Australia Day”, marking the landing of the first colonists from England, whereas Aborigines angrily mark it as “Invasion Day”, “Survival Day” and “Day of Mourning”. It marks the day they lost their land, their children, their wages, many aspects of their culture, their freedom. In short, the start of their widespread death and dispossession. The gathering will be on the lawns of the former parliament house, where in 1972 four activists stuck a sun umbrella into the ground (see below) and henceforth called it the “Aboriginal Embassy” to signify that they were treated as foreigners on land they own.








It has become an iconic gathering place for all indigenous groups and has spawned “embassies” at nine other locations. Four Aboriginal nations have since also declared themselves independent of Australia.


Most of the attendees, who can’t afford to pay for accommodation, will camp at the site.

One of the drivers of the sovereignty activism is Ghillar Michael Anderson, the last survivor of the Canberra embassy founders, who will again speak at the sit-in.

A series of preparatory regional meetings start in Adelaide on the 15th and continue in Melbourne (17th), Sydney (18th), Brisbane (20th) and Alice Springs (22nd). A two-day “freedom summit” took place in late November in Alice Springs (Mparntwe in the local Aboriginal language), where delegates were elected to fire up people in their respective home regions.

The catchcry going out is: “We are reclaiming the Aboriginal Rights Struggle and the Aboriginal Voice. We are mobilising for a shot at history, for what is ours, for who we are, for our children and for their children.”

“The freedom summit delegation will remain at the Canberra Tent Embassy until federal parliament opens to then give their demands to the federal government. Those demands will be properly formulated over the time spent camping at the original tent embassy near Old Parliament House,” writes Sydney based activist Ray Jackson ( in his call to the Sydney meeting.

“The national meetings will be a clarion call to all of our mobs to come to Canberra to support the freedom delegation in putting our demands to parliament.”

“Please distribute throughout your networks. These events need your support. Contact for the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy event is Aunt Jenny on 0404 165 193.”

When the Canberra tent embassy met for the 40th anniversary in 2012 it attracted about 1,500 people from all over Australia. 


Plenty of issues:





Background Info Web-Pages   |   |   Australian Aborigines preparing for Canberra sit-in   |   

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