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Hawaiians step up opposition to telescope project

A state agency representing the interests of native Hawaiians has voted to withdraw its support for the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope, an international project planned for Mauna Kea.

In a vote on 30 April, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs reversed its previous decision in 2009 to endorse the project, the online news site Science Insider reported. The vote, which followed weeks of protests by residents, has been seen as a symbolic message that the local population is not in favour of the development.

“The magnitude of this issue is immense,” office trustee Dan Ahuna is quoted as saying. “We have the opportunity to send a strong message that it is no longer business as usual for Hawaiians.”

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