JABIRU 0886: TRESPASS tells the story of the opposition by the Mirrar people to uranium mining operations in the Kakadu National Park area. With their language and culture constantly under siege, the Mirrar people began a non-violent campaign of resistance against the policies of the Federal Government and one of the world’s largest mining companies, ERA (Energy Resources of Australia). Both the Ranger and Jabiluka Uranium Mines and the mining town of Jabiru are in the middle of Mirrar country and meant an erosion of rights and self-determination for the Mirrar.
Yvonne Margarula is one of the Mirrar leaders of the campaign against the mining entities and the government, determined to preserve her culture and her way of life, and to protect her people’s sacred sites. Working with environmental organizations, the Mirrar used large-scale civil disobedience to blockade work on the mines.Yvonne has been awarded many international awards including the 1999 Goldman Environmental Prize, in recognition of the Mirrar efforts to protect their country and culture against uranium mining. The film ends with Yvonne Margarula’s arrest whilst engaged in a protest demonstration.
This award-winning film is both a powerful depiction of the history of the Mirrar struggle, and a moving portrait of Yvonne herself – quietly spoken but unrelenting in her struggle for survival. Eventually, the Jabiluka mine did not proceed, and in 2003 rehabilitation of the mining site began.
“We will never let go. We will stand strong forever. We will keep going until they stop, and we will all be well again.” - Yvonne Margarula.
Director/Writer - DAVID VADIVELOO
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