Melbourne Indymedia reborn – MelbourneProtests bows out

With the long-awaited return of Melbourne Indymedia referred to in the previous post, on the Climate Emergency Rally of 13 June, any need for this blog, if indeed there ever was any need for it, has ceased. It will stay here in its present state as long as WordPress are prepared to host it, but I shall not be adding any further posts to it. Hopefully, people will find the new Indymedia site meets all their needs.
– melbourneprotests

Climate Emergency Rally – 13 June

Banner leading march down Swanston Street

Banner leading march down Swanston Street

Melbourne did its bit towards the nationwide day of action on climate change organised by a range of community groups including Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, the Climate Action Centre and others. The event began with a rally at the State Library, where there were speakers including Greens Senator Bob Brown, Firefighters Union secretary Peter Marshall, David Spratt of Climate Code Red, and 11-year-old India Jilly, who spoke on behalf of the generation which is to inherit the mess. Rod Quantock did the warming up, which was very much needed given the wintry weather, and MC was Chris Breen.

After the speeches the rally set off down Swanston Street towards the Town Hall, where the Victoria ALP was holding a State Conference, and then on to the Treasury Gardens for a final wrap-up by Taegan Edwards of Yarra Climate Action Now, and music by Melting Pot. At the Town Hall the marchers staged a sit-down, blocking the street, while Damien Lawson of FoE and Tuvalu islander Emeretta Cross addressed the crowd., which by now had grown to an estimated four-five thousand after a rather shaky start at the Library.

There is a report of the event on
http://www.climateactioncentre.org/June13rally#attachments
with links to photos by Peter Campbell onPicasa,

and a slideshow of images is available on EngageMedia.

(See also http://www.engagemedia.org/Members/takver/videos/climate_emergency_rally.mpg/view and http://www.engagemedia.org/Members/takver/videos/Climate03_DamienLawson.MPG/view for speeches at the Town Hall.)

There is also extensive coverage on the re-born Indymedia site. Welcome back Indymedia!

Here are some more images from the rally and march:

Animal Liberation Victoria - one of a  number of vegan banners at the rally

Animal Liberation Victoria - one of a number of vegan banners at the rally

It's Peter Garrett's head on the  stick ... so I was told

It's Peter Garrett's head on the stick ... so I was told

(Wise) Owls for Conservation

(Wise) Owls for Conservation

Rod Quantock warming the crowd

Rod Quantock warming the crowd

Senator Bob Brown speaking

Senator Bob Brown speaking

Close up

Close up

David Spratt speaking

David Spratt speaking

Peter Marshall speaking

Peter Marshall speaking

India Jilly

India Jilly

Getting ready to march - the wind was getting up, too.

Getting ready to march - the wind was getting up, too.

Bob Brown left holding the baby

Bob Brown left holding the baby

Musical pedal power

Musical pedal power

CEPU flags - one of the few signs of union participation

CEPU flags - one of the few signs of union participation

Industrial Workers of the World

Industrial Workers of the World

Climate activist turtle

Climate activist turtle

Representing the coal lobby

Representing the coal lobby

Children were much in evidence

Children were much in evidence

For example here with the Friends of the Earth

For example here with the Friends of the Earth

... and here at the Town Hall, Emeretta speaking.

... and here at the Town Hall, Emeretta speaking.

The Town Hall sit-down

The Town Hall sit-down

Damien Lawson of FoE calling for a campaign of Civil Disobedience

Damien Lawson of FoE calling for a campaign of Civil Disobedience

In Collins Street, heading for the Treasury Gardens

In Collins Street, heading for the Treasury Gardens

More vegans

More vegans

Dogs are affected by climate change, too

Dogs are affected by climate change, too

The coal lobby again

The coal lobby again

At the Treasury Gardens - Taegan Edwards speaking

At the Treasury Gardens - Taegan Edwards speaking

Taegan speaking - another view

Taegan speaking - another view

Solidarity with the People of Peru – 11 June

Answering a call from the Indigenous people of Peru now facing murderous repression at the hands of the government of President Alan Garcia, LASNET organised a solidarity action at the GPO in Melbourne today. A succession of speakers detailed the events of the last few days at Bagua and read a list of demands in support of the Indigenous people, who are attempting to defend their traditional homelands from exploitation at the hands of multinational companies backed by the police and armed forces of the Peruvian Government. Among the speakers were Indigenous activists from Aotearoa and Australia, as well as LASNET, the Latin American Solidarity Network, whose spokesperson delivered an address in Spanish. (Extracts of these speeches will be posted shortly on YouTube.*) Flags of the Indigenous struggle were draped on the steps of the GPO behind the speakers, and leaflets explaining the background to the protest were handed to the public.

Sue Leigh reads an account of the massacre of June 5-6

Sue Leigh reads an account of the massacre of June 5-6


See http://www.democracynow.org/2009/6/10/peru
and http://www.latinlasnet.org/node/282

Cheryl Kaulfuss

Cheryl Kaulfuss

Longstanding activist for Indigenous rights Cheryl Kaulfuss “what we are seeing in Peru is no different from what we have seen happening in Australia” – a theme taken up by other speakers, including Sina Brown-Davis, seen here reading a list of demands:

Sina Brown-Davis reads a list of demands

Sina Brown-Davis reads a list of demands

See also http://uriohau.blogspot.com/2009/06/melbourne-australia-action-alert-in.html

Lucho addressed the rally in Spanish and English

Lucho addressed the rally in Spanish and English

See the LASNET website.

Robbie Thorpe, Indigenous elder and activist

Robbie Thorpe, Indigenous elder and activist

Towards the end of the rally, Krautungalung elder Robbie Thorpe, speaker as an Indigenous Australian, delivered a message of support to the Indigenous people of Peru, with a passionate denunciation of the genocide inflicted on Indigenous people across the world by the colonial powers. Part of his speech will be included in the forthcoming video report on the rally.

Police at the corner

Police at the corner

Perhaps entirely by coincidence, while Robbie Thorpe was speaking a surprisingly large group of police could be seen watching proceedings from the corner of the Mall – and not the same three who had made themselves known at the beginning. However, eventually they went away without incident.

The rally ended with a call to sign the online petition at Avaaz.

More links:
http://www.amazonwatch.org/

http://www.democracynow.org/2009/6/8/peruvian_police_accused_of_massacring_indigenous

http://www.rainforestportal.org/shared/alerts/send.aspx?id=peru_amazon

*

Repower Anglesea – Switch off Coal

One of the slogans of the campaign

One of the slogans of the campaign

Representatives of various climate action groups met with banners, surf boards and placards at Parliament House to promote the campaign to replace Angelsea’s coal-fired power station with renewable energy sources.

On the steps of Parliament House

On the steps of Parliament House

As far as one can can tell, no major event is planned for World Environment Day in Melbourne this year, but there is to be a Climate Emergency Rally on Saturday 13 June – details on http://www.climateactioncentre.org/junerally

Today’s event comes a day before the launch of the Repower Anglesea campaign in Angelsea itself – see http://www.climateactioncentre.org/anglesealaunch#attachments, which includes a report from today.

Two more links:

http://mc2.vicnet.net.au/home/sustang/web/coal.html
http://www.climateactioncentre.org/anglesea