Media Release: Tarkine defender penalised over tree-sit protest

Tarkine Defender Andy Szollosi appeared in Hobart magistrates court today and was given a 6-month good behaviour bond after an October tree-sit protest in Tasmania’s takayna / Tarkine.

“The ancient forests of Sumac ridge in takayna / Tarkine are still standing as the blockade to protect forests from logging enters the tenth week. Peaceful occupation of these forests by members of the community and campaigners from the Bob Brown Foundation will continue as long as the government fails to protect these vast, intact rainforests,” Bob Brown Foundation Campaign Manager Jenny Weber said.

“Today’s penalty for Andy Szollosi is another example of the powers Tasmania police already have to remove and charge people defending the environment. The draconian anti-protest laws that recently passed the lower house of Tasmanian Parliament are harsh, unnecessary and excessive. We will be lobbying legislative councillors as to why the law should be thrown out,” Jenny Weber said.

“Native forests in Tasmania are in need of urgent protection for their benefits to climate in an age of climate emergency and wildlife protection in this time of extinction crisis, including the Tarkine’s vast tracts of rainforests and wet eucalyptus wildlife habitat,” Jenny Weber said.

"Native forests here in Tasmania are still being clear felled at an alarming rate. Tasmania has lost a huge area of forests due to the devastating bushfires in 2019, these same forests were on Sus Timbers Tasmania logging schedule. We need to ensure that native forests are not clear felled. Replacing intact forests with a mono culture of blue gums increases the overall fire risk of our bushland. Surely this is of concern to all Tasmanians,” Andy Szollosi said after his court appearance this morning.

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