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Gangalidda and Garawa peoples seek recognition of land and waters near Burketown

The National Native Title Tribunal has placed advertisements in metropolitan and regional newspapers today, notifying people with an interest in a native title claim near Burketown in the Gulf of Carpentaria region.

Tribunal regional manager Ms Therese Forde said the advertisements were aimed at people with a possible interest in the claim areas, giving them notice to apply to become a party so that they can be included in negotiations.

The native title claim, made by the Gangalidda and Garawa Peoples, covers an area of 6,257 square kilometres, falling within the local government areas of Burke Shire Council and Doomadgee Aboriginal Council.

She said the Gangalidda and Garawa peoples have asked for their traditional rights and interests to be recognised over the claim area. However, not all land and waters within the external boundary may be claimed, for example, the application excludes private freehold land within that boundary.

'People or organisations with interests in the four areas claimed may want to be involved in working out how their rights may coexist with those of native title holders,' Ms Forde said.

'By registering for talks, people may have the opportunity to participate in mediation meetings with the applicants and other parties. The Tribunal conducts these meetings, aiming to resolve issues and reach voluntary agreements that respect everyone's rights and interests.'

The Native Title Registrar has accepted this application for registration. Any person who thinks they may have an interest in the claim has until 14 March 2005 to apply to the District Registrar of the Federal Court to become a party to the application.

Further information about the claim and how to become a party is available from the NNTT on freecall 1800 640 501.

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Lauren Heinritz
08 9268 7466