The indigenous Australian Githabul people now own over 112,000 hectares of national parks and forests in New South Wales, a south-east Australian state.
At a special hearing, the Federal Court ratified an agreement reached between the Githabul and the state government earlier this year, giving the indigenous people their native title rights in the northern region of the state. The claim, which took 12 years to settle, covers nine national parks and 13 state forests. The claim's finalization coincides with a the state's auditor general's report that reveals departmental bottlenecks in processing claims under the New South Wales Aboriginal Land Rights Act have held up the transfer of grants valued at up to aus $1 billion (us $870 million).
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