Aboriginal people seek support in nuclear waste dump battle

From Chain Reaction #126, April 2016, national magazine of Friends of the Earth, Australia www.archive.foe.org.au/chain-reaction

Aboriginal Traditional Owners in Australia are asking organisations in Australia and around the world to endorse a statement to help prevent their land being used as an international high-level nuclear waste dump. Organisations can endorse the statement online at: www.anfa.org.au/sign-the-declaration

This is the statement:

'The Poison –  Leave It'
A group of politicians and business-people are developing a plan to build an international high-level nuclear waste dump in South Australia. The plan is strongly opposed by many South Australians and by an overwhelming majority of Aboriginal people.
The Australian Nuclear Free Alliance, representing Aboriginal people from across Australia, calls on nuclear nations NOT to dump nuclear waste in Australia. The nuclear industry has a track record of Aboriginal dispossession and environmental pollution − from the atomic bomb tests to uranium mining to nuclear waste dump proposals.
We call on nuclear nations NOT to dump nuclear waste in Australia.

Statements from many Aboriginal people and organisations are posted on the same website. The Aboriginal Congress of South Australia resolved in an August 2015 meeting:

"We, as native title representatives of lands and waters of South Australia, stand firmly in opposition to nuclear developments on our country, including all plans to expand uranium mining, and implement nuclear reactors and nuclear waste dumps on our land. We ask that the Royal Commission recommends against such plans, thoroughly and respectfully considering our views and the views of other Aboriginal groups, individuals and key stakeholders to prevent dirty and dangerous nuclear projects being imposed on our lands and on the lives of our people now and for future generations.

"Many of us suffer to this day the devastating effects of the nuclear industry and continue to be subject to it through extensive uranium mining on our lands and country that has been contaminated. We view any further expansion of industry as an imposition on our country, our people, our environment, our culture and our history. We also view it as a blatant disregard for our rights under various legislative instruments, including the founding principles of this state."