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Australia Aborigines filing lawsuits after official apology for historic mistreatment

[JURIST] Australian Aborigine groups said Friday they are preparing lawsuits in response to an offical apology [text; AFP report] delivered Wednesday by Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd [official profile] in an address to Parliament, publicly accepting responsibility for the historical mistreatment of Aboriginal people under the "laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments." Between 30 and 40 lawsuits will be filed against the Victorian state government seeking redress for a government program that forcibly removed Aboriginal children to be integrated into white society [ENIAR backgrounder], according to a spokesperson for Stolen Generations Victoria [advocacy website].

Aboriginal compensation claims against Australian governments have been mostly unsuccessful in the past, and legal experts do not expect that the official apology will increase the chances of success for future lawsuits. AP has more. Australian Broadcasting Corp. has additional coverage.

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