Rudd to 'say sorry' to indigenous Australians for past injustice

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Melbourne, Jan 27 (UNI) Prime Minister Kevin Rudd will ''say sorry'' to indigenous Australians for past injustices, reversing an 11-year policy under the previous conservative government that damaged race relations.

Mr Rudd said an apology to indigenous Australians will aim to "bridge the gap" with non-indigenous Australians rather than providing any compensation, the Australian Associated Press reported.

However, the government is still figuring the details of the highly sensitive apology and Mr Rudd remained coy on the issue.

''The key thing is to build a bridge with indigenous Australia through an apology, through saying sorry because that bridge is halfway to respect, to restoring respect,'' the Prime Minister said.

Mr Rudd said compensation did not need to be part of the reconciliation efforts.

''I think the key thing is to build a bridge of respect between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians rather than sweep that to one side." Mr Rudd said the Government's top priorities in achieving reconciliation include improving indigenous health and indigenous education and ensuring the protection of children.

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