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Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Australian indigenous community behind social media rumors refutes claims

Two Aboriginal residents of Binjari and Rockhol, on the outskirts of Katerina, posted on social media that the alleged forced vaccinations were untrue and that the authorities were treating them with respect and dignity, NT News reported Thursday.

This stems from allegations on Twitter earlier in the week that military personnel forced residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and took them to a facility in Howard Springs against their will.

The social media stories were in response to an ongoing vaccination campaign in Aboriginal communities, as well as a request from the Northern Territory government for military assistance to help with food distribution, COVID-19 testing, isolation regulations, and transportation of close contacts to Howard. -Springs for quarantine.

In one video post, an Aboriginal man said he received a call from a Robinson River elder who cried after everyone in his community was forcibly vaccinated.

These allegations were also denied by the Australian Department of Defense (DOD), which confirmed in an email to The Epoch Times that the military’s allegations of forced vaccinations and detentions were “categorically false.”

“Soldiers currently supporting the Northern Territory government cannot forcibly evict residents from their homes, forcibly vaccinate residents against their will, or forcibly obstruct the filming or photography of residents in public places,” the Defense Department said.

Their response also stated that the Department of Defense is supporting the nationwide response to COVID-19 by providing support upon request by states and territories through the Australian Emergency Management Authority. This support primarily focuses on COVID-19 testing supporting measures to slow the spread of the virus and the well-being of the community.

“ADF personnel perform a supporting role for the state and territory authorities and are not authorized or authorized to conduct any law enforcement actions,” added the department.

Likewise, Binjari resident Evonne Booth said on social media that the posts about Binjari communities and isolation were untrue, NT News reported.

“If people want to know what’s going on, talk to us, our families and our mafia. The army and the police do not remove anyone against their will. There are no children who are forcibly vaccinated, ”she said.

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She added that parents make decisions for their children and everyone in society is treated with respect.

Susie Andrews, a Rockhole resident, also confirmed that none of these claims on social media are true.

“Nobody is forced or detained to get this vaccination. We are taken care of and we have a voice for people who can answer our questions, ”she said. “We can ask the police and they do their best.”

In addition, the Woorli-Wurlingjang Aboriginal Health Service issued a statement on behalf of the residents of Binjari and Rokhol, stating that the residents of these communities were affected by false comments made about their situation.

“We do not appreciate it when outsiders make comments that are not true. People on social media who say our people are being mistreated need to understand that their comments are hurting the very people they claim they care about, ”the statement said.

“We are treated with great respect and we value all the support these support staff members provide.”

Meanwhile, at noon Thursday, the Rockhole community began a transition from tight isolation to isolation due to negative COVID-19 test results and wastewater treatment results.

According to NT Health, residents are now allowed to leave their homes for five main reasons: medical treatment, essential goods and services, work deemed necessary, one hour of exercise per day within a 5 km radius of the home, and the care and support of a family member or a person who cannot support himself.

However, the Binjari community will remain rigidly isolated, meaning that people can only leave their homes for medical treatment, in emergencies or as required by law.

This is due to the fact that on Thursday, there was one new case of a teenager from the Binjari community. He was closely related to a previous case and was quarantined at the Howard Springs facility on the outskirts of Darwin.

The number of active COVID-19 cases in the Northern Territory is now 50.

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