SHARED VISION: Uncle Robert Corowa will set up a tent embassy at Nimbin in July in solidarity with the West Papua Freedom Flotilla.
SHARED VISION: Uncle Robert Corowa will set up a tent embassy at Nimbin in July in solidarity with the West Papua Freedom Flotilla. Doug Eaton

Aboriginal tent embassy going up at Nimbin Rocks next month

AN Aboriginal tent embassy at Nimbin Rocks will be established next month.

It is being set up in solidarity with the West Papua Freedom Flotilla, a convoy of resistance against what the independence movement call the "genocide" of its indigenous population under Indonesian military occupation.

It will be a tight itinerary, but last week it was decided that Nimbin would be added to healing ceremonies taking place from Lake Eyre to West Papua.

The official Nimbin ceremonies will take place on Sunday, July 28, but the public are also invited to prepare the day prior.

The indigenous populations have granted each other with Aboriginal passports.

"All life is sacred," explained Uncle Robert Corowa of North Lismore, the official "fireman" of the embassy.

"West Papuan people are our closest neighbours, they've been our neighbours for thousands of years and those people have had their livelihood disrupted due to all the killings," he said.

"This is about putting on the pressure.

"They haven't been lost in a storm, they are not in detention centres.

"Half a million people are dead."

The convoy intends to transport sacred water collected from the mound springs of Arabunna country while following the ancient song lines across Australia in a freedom ride from Lake Eyre.

The convoy aims to reconnect culturally and creatively with Aboriginal communities at Alice Springs, Tennant Creek and now Nimbin.

The people of the Northern Rivers have been invited by Arabunna Aboriginal Elder Uncle Kevin Buzzacott, who believes that following their song lines will reveal a deep connection between the lands which were once joined.

"We were one people, we still are one people. We must uphold our cultural connection, the old land is calling us," he said. To be involved email ruth.forsythe@gmail.com.

Following song lines

To get from Lake Eyre to Papua New Guinea, the convoy will follow song lines, or dreaming tracks, the paths recorded in traditional songs, stories, dance, and painting.

A knowledgable indigenous person is able to navigate across the land by repeating the words of the song, which describe the location of landmarks, waterholes, and other natural phenomena.


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