Fire at Old Parliament House condemned by Aboriginal Tent Embassy

Updated: Jan 8

Albert McKnight 31 December 2021 9

Old Parliament House after the fire on 30 December. Photo: ACT Policing. Members of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy have condemned the fire that started at Old Parliament House on Thursday (30 December) which caused extensive damage to its front façade and burnt during a protest at the site.

The fire started at the heritage building around noon, with an eyewitness telling the RiotACT the flames had destroyed the front doors and the canopy above it.

A statement from the Aboriginal Tent Embassy shared on social media says the embassy did not condone the actions of protesters who occupied the steps of Old Parliament House that day.

“Although we support the concept of non-violent direct action, we do not condone the destruction of public and private property,” the statement reads.

“The actions of such protesters conducting a ‘Smoking Ceremony’ was done so without the knowledge, consent or mandate of the Embassy Council and Traditional Owners responsible for the regulation of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy.”

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