From October 2019, climbing Uluru in Australia’s Red Centre will no longer be possible.
A decision by traditional owners and national park managers announced this week declared that Uluru, otherwise known as Ayers Rock, will cease being climbed out of respect for Indigenous people’s wishes.
Traditional owners of Uluru have called for an end to the climbing of the landmark for many years. The rock is a sacred site which should be treated with historical and cultural respect and appreciation.
Sammy Wilson, chair of the board, explained the decision. “Whitefellas see the land in economic terms, where Anangu see it as tjukurpa [cultural law]. If the tjukurpa is gone, so is everything,” he says. “We want to hold on to our culture – if we don’t it could disappear completely in another 50 or 100 years.”
Climbing will stop precisely 34 years after the traditional owners of Uluru received the landmark back form the government.