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SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia has closed the national park home to its revered indigenous site of Uluru after some in the community blocked an access route for fear that visitors could carry in coronavirus infections.
The country is battling a new wave of the deadly virus, with southeastern Victoria state reeling from hundreds of infections, while Indigenous Australians are seen at greater risk as they suffer a higher incidence of other health woes.
“It’s up to tourists to stay away if they come from hotspots or are sick,” Thalia Bohl-Van Den Boogaard, the representative of a group of Indigenous Australians protesting against the visits, told Reuters by telephone.
A few protesters from the indigenous community stood on the main entrance road to the park on Tuesday, down from the previous day’s numbers of between 30 and 40 that had turned away tourists before the attraction closed, she said.