Zuckerberg drops Hawaiin land lawsuits after outcry

Mark Zuckerberg
Updated 28 January 2017
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Zuckerberg drops Hawaiin land lawsuits after outcry

HONOLULU: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is dropping lawsuits that sought to buy out Native Hawaiians who own small pieces of land within his sprawling Kauai estate, after days of public outcry.
State representatives had criticized the legal action, while neighbors of the property reportedly planned to march this week in protest.
Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, said in a letter to the community published Friday in The Garden Island newspaper that they are ending the cases “to find a better path forward.” They say they “will work together with the community on a new approach.”
A Zuckerberg spokesman confirmed the couple sent the letter.
The 14 parcels mostly belong to Native Hawaiian families awarded the land during the mid-19th century, when private property was established in Hawaii. Many original owners died without wills. Ownership today is split among hundreds of descendants, many of whom are unaware of their shares.
The couple filed court cases last month to identify the parcel owners and ask the court to auction the land.


French priest suspended after slapping baby during baptism

Video shows priest slapping crying baby.
Updated 55 min 29 sec ago
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French priest suspended after slapping baby during baptism

  • The baby’s parents, visibly shocked, eventually manage to extricate the child from the priest’s grip
  • The child was bawling and I needed to turn his head so I could pour the water

PARIS: A French Catholic priest was suspended Friday after a video of him smacking a crying baby during a baptism ceremony went viral, drawing widespread condemnation on social media.
In footage posted on Twitter on Thursday, gasps can be heard when the 89-year-old priest, after ordering the infant he is holding to “be quiet,” sharply slaps his cheek.
A few seconds later he smacks him again.
The baby’s parents, visibly shocked, eventually manage to extricate the child from the priest’s grip during the ceremony in Champeaux, about 50 kilometers (30 miles) southeast of Paris.
“This loss of self-control can be attributed to the fatigue of an elderly priest, but that doesn’t excuse it,” the diocese of Meaux, which includes the town, said in a statement.
It said the priest would no longer be leading baptisms and weddings nor holding mass until further notice.
“The child was bawling and I needed to turn his head so I could pour the water. I was saying ‘be quiet’ but he wouldn’t calm down,” the priest told France Info radio on Friday.
“It was something between a caress and a little slap,” he said. “I was trying to calm him down, I didn’t really know what to do.”