Aboriginal leaders ban tourists from climbing Uluru

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The board's chairman Sammy Wilson was expected to read a speech during the meeting saying that its Indigenous owners have felt intimidated into keeping Uluru open for climbing.

Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, is in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park - that's about in the middle of the country.

It made a decision to close the rock to climbers from October 26, 2019 - 34 years to the day since it was handed back to its traditional owners, the Anangu people, the Northern Territory News reports.

But in two years' time, climbing Uluru will be no more.

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Uluru's land title was handed back to its traditional owners in 1985, but was immediately leased to the Australian federal government to be jointly managed as a national park for 99 years. "Let's come together; let's close it together", he said. "We are not stopping tourists, just this activity".

There are already signs at the foot of the rock asking people not to climb on it to respect the traditional law of the Anangu Aboriginal people, but these are often ignored.

"The path left by rubber from the soles of climbers' shoes is visible from kilometres away and some tourists leave litter and damage the rock".

"Perhaps most disturbingly, many people die climbing Uluru". (She said it was "a tribute to the greatness of the Rock", not an act of disrespect.) There have also been reports of people defecating on the sacred site. The Central Land Council (CLC), who represents Aboriginal people in Central Australia, welcomed the move.

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