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Hawaiians plan Kahului protest

WAILUKU, Maui — A Native Hawaiian group is planning a three-day demonstration at Kahului Airport, starting tomorrow, to protest recent court decisions that members say threaten to erode native rights and entitlements.

Na Kupuna O Maui is organizing the event, which will feature sign-holding and distribution of literature intended to educate tourists about the issue.

"We’re going to be positive and go in there with aloha — nothing else," said Charles Kauluwehi Max-well Sr., an organizer.

At the same time, he said, Native Hawaiians are angry about recent lawsuits that seek to have the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and Hawaiian gathering rights declared unconstitutional and to eliminate the "Hawaiians only" provisions in OHA.

Marilyn Kali, state Department of Transportation spokeswoman, said airport officials expect to issue a permit for the demonstration. While Maxwell said 1,000 or more will participate, Kali said her understanding is perhaps 200 to 300 people will take part over three days.

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