20 Aug 2008

Hawaii palace reopens after occupation by sovereignty advocates

3:42 pm on 20 August 2008

The grounds of a historic palace in Hawaii reopened for the first time since members of a group advocating Hawaiian sovereignty briefly occupied it last week.

Six people charged with second-degree burglary and 16 others charged with criminal trespass have been released on bail, but one person charged with second-degree assault remains in custody.

The group is one of several in Hawaii to reject its statehood and claim the authority to govern the islands.

Deborah Ward, spokeswoman for the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, says the palace was closed until further notice.

The executive director of Friends of Iolani Palace, Kippen de Alba Chu, says historical artifacts inside the palace weren't damaged.