MAUNA KEA, HAWAII (HawaiiNewsNow) - A third law enforcement move was made overnight related to recent protests of the Thirty Meter Telescope atop Mauna Kea, according to an announcement made early Monday by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources.
Although no arrests were made because campers vacated the area last week, DLNR and Hawaii Police Departments officers disassembled and removed the large tent that protesters had erected near the Mauna Kea Visitors Center. Protesters did reach an agreement last week with the state to take down the tent, but officers confiscated it after its owner failed to claim and take it down.
The hale next to the tent has not been removed, however.
Protesters were camping on the mountain in an attempt to block construction, which has been stalled since April. Since then, 15 people were arrested as a result of the 120-day emergency rule.
The emergency rule, passed by the state Board of Land and Natural Resources in June, prohibits camping in a restricted area, along Mauna Kea Observatory Access Road, between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m.