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Rio Tinto could have chosen one of three options to expand its iron ore mine that would not have damaged a 46,000-year-old highly significant Aboriginal heritage site in Juukan Gorge , but chose a fourth option that did damage the rock shelters “in order to access higher volumes of high-grade ore”. In a submission to a Senate inquiry on the destruction of the Juukan Gorge rock shelters, Rio Tinto acknowledged that “various opportunities were missed to re-evaluate the mine plan in light of this material new information” on the significance of one of the sites. It repeated earlier public comments that the destruction of the rock shelters, dubbed Juukan 1 and Juukan 2, “should not have occurred”. Full story

4 August