Melbourne's Catholic Commission for Justice, Development and Peace (CCJDP) has called for a reparations tribunal to be set up to deal with past injustices perpetrated against indigenous Australians.
The Catholic Weekly reports that the proposal is one among a number of initiatives proposed The proposals have been made in a recently released statement that comes in the wake of comments by former prime minister, Malcolm Fraser, that Australia should be discussing a treaty and that the rights of indigenous Australians have not been adequately protected.
    Adding impetus to the CCJDP statement is the recent decision by the Federal Government restricting Australia's participation in the United Nation's human rights committees.
    The statement says the Government's decision "demonstrates the fragility of adherence to human rights in Australia, particularly for the most vulnerable."
    According to the statement, Australia's current constitution is more concerned with the division of powers between States and Territories, and the Commonwealth, rather than between individual citizens and the State.
Cath Weekly
28 Sep 00

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