Thursday, January 17, 2013

Australia: Kimberley graveyard to rise as the “Saudi Arabia of Gas” | Asia News – Politics, Media, Education | Asian Correspondent

Australia: Kimberley graveyard to rise as the “Saudi Arabia of Gas

James Price Point is one of the fiercest battlegrounds between the Indigenous people and the Australian Government in contemporary times. With the support of the local communities, Green and civic groups, the Indigenous people are fighting to protect the “Law Below the Top Soil” – the law handed down from many generations to another that governs their ancestral rights.

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  1. Australia critisises China on Human Rights,but what is the difference?

    GOVERNMENTS the world over often hand out year-end bonuses to employees who devise efficient ways to handle problems or meet goals.

    In China, at the close of last year, local governments gave employees cash awards for doing good work in demolishing family homes, flattening ancestral tombs and enforcing the nation's one-child policy.

    ''Land acquisition, house demolition and relocation is China's biggest tool for wealth transfer,'' Shen Xiaojie, a news website editor, wrote on Sina Weibo. ''This kind of award is like bandits dividing their spoils.''


    Such payments reveal local priorities as officials rewarded their own for the often difficult work of implementing controversial policies, sometimes with violent methods. But the 2012 bonuses leaked to the public have provoked condemnation that suggests that China's people are growing more vocal in their criticism of a government many view as deeply corrupt.


    Two of the most commented-upon payments in late 2012 rewarded demolition workers who tore down family homes on government-requisitioned land in Lin county, in north China's Shanxi province, and tomb flatteners in Zhoukou City, central Henan province, who cleared more than 2 million ancestral tombs last year to recover farmland.


    On Sina Weibo, a hugely popular Chinese version of microblogging site Twitter, which is banned in China, many users called the $US116,000 ($109,000) total payment to ''advanced'' demolition workers in Lin county ''shameful'' and ''ridiculous''.

    Most of the mass protests in China are sparked by government land grabs and forcible demolition of homes, as officials evict residents, who are often poorly compensated, to secure the land sales that form most of the local government income.

    In the tabloid Beijing News, commentator Hu Yinbin blamed local governments' ''confrontational work perspectives.''

    Officials ''treat people as the opposite side, getting them down counts as their success, and for which they will be rewarded. This kind of thinking will only stimulate more hostile emotions,'' he wrote.

    In Henan province, there has been widespread opposition to government demolition of ancestral tombs. The policy shatters tradition and breaks cultural taboos, but the government insists the land is essential for crop cultivation.