Protesters set fire to the Union Jack flag as Australia observed a national day of mourning for the late Queen.
Memorial services to celebrate Ms life were held in Canberra on Thursday – declared a “one-off” public holiday by the Prime Minister following her d*ath – as were Melbourne, Sydney, Anti-monarchy demonstrations were held in Brisbane, Adelaide and capital of the country.
Before the memorial service at Parliament House in Canberra, footage was shared on social media of the burning of the Union Jack in a park in Melbourne – a mealtime starting point to end the monarchy’s march.
An Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) journalist also shared video of an Australian flag being burnt in Brisbane as the crowd chanted “always, always will be a homeland”.
Prime Minister Anthony Albany and Governor-General David Hurley, who had recently returned from the Queen’s funeral, were joined in Canberra by state and territory leaders, ministers, former ministers, ambassadors, chief justices and former governors-general.
After a minute’s silence and the singing of the national anthem Advance Australia Fair, Mr Hurley described the day of mourning as a day of sadness but also a “day of reflection”. He acknowledged that the country’s First Nations people were “shaped by colonial history”.
“Considering the unifying role that the immigrant played, I will admit that his passing has evoked mixed reactions for some in our community. I am conscious of respecting that the colonial “Historically many First Nations have led Australia on a journey of reconciliation. It is a journey we must complete as a nation,” the Governor-General told mourners.
His (Majesty’s) passing has evoked mixed reactions from some in our community. I am conscious to respect that many First Nations have brought Australian reconciliation journeys along the lines of colonial history.Governor General David Hurley
“And so about her legacy to us in Australia, I find myself questioning whether the unprecedented response of the last 13 days was just a moment, a unique response to the remarkable life, longevity of Msgr. , and service happened, or is there? Is there a greater lesson? I would suggest that a lesson for us is to be both reflective and prospective in our thinking, to look back and appreciate and to look forward and reflect. can go.
In his speech, Mr Albany said the Queen had sought to understand Australia during her 16 visits to the country during her 70-year reign.
“Memorials to the Queen dot our landscape. Elizabeth’s name lives on in almost every city and town. Perhaps the greatest tribute we can pay to her family and her memory is a marble statue or a metal plaque. No. It is a new spirit of service to the community. A true understanding of one’s duty to others. A strong determination to respect all,” the Prime Minister said.
“This will be a most fitting memorial to a remarkable life of service to others. May Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II rest in eternal peace.”
Meanwhile, organizers of the Melbourne rally, which included the Warriors of Aboriginal Resistance (WAR) and the War Solidarity Towards Treaties Group (FISTT), called for the end of the monarchy and the end of the “racist, colonial imperialism” that stole from Aboriginal people. had gone. and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
“While they mourn the Queen, we mourn all that her reign stole from us: our children, our land, the lives of our loved ones, our holy places, our history,” WAR said in a statement.
“We stand against racist colonialism and its ongoing effects on us as Strait Islander and Torres Islander peoples.
“We stand in solidarity and anger with other peoples around the world who have been oppressed, m*rdered, enslaved and stigmatized under the British colonial institution. We do not want to be part of the stolen wealth.
FISTT spokeswoman and New South Wales Greens upper house candidate Linda June Coe called the sudden declaration of a day of mourning for the late king “a real insult to First Nations people”.
The Wiradjuri and Badu Island woman told the ABC that since the queen’s d*ath, indigenous people’s “responses and experiences of colonization and occupation” had been silenced and erased.
“Our masses have been demanding recognition of our day of mourning for 80 years since 1938,” he said. “It really shows that there are two sides to this story and unfortunately our silence continues and has been completely erased.”
In Adelaide, a protester was kicked out of Government House for holding a sign and writing “End of Monarchy” in one of the Queen’s condolence books. Footage shared by 7News Adelaide shows the man being led away from the scene by three police officers.
Despite significant pressure to do so in Australia’s recent history, no treaty has been negotiated among First Nations peoples. Australia is the only former British nation that has not ratified a treaty with its indigenous peoples – which would require the government to recognize Aboriginal nations as separate from the nation of Australia.
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