Obama faces smattering of protests on Hawaiian vacation

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Obama faces smattering of protests on Hawaiian vacation
A group of protesters show placards as US President Barack Obama's motorcade arrives at his vacation home in Kailua, Hawaii, on December 28, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
A group of protesters show placards as US President Barack Obama's motorcade arrives at his vacation home in Kailua, Hawaii, on December 28, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
A group of protesters show placards as US President Barack Obama's motorcade arrives at his vacation home in Kailua, Hawaii, on December 28, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama leaves from a gym after working out at the Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe Bay in Hawaii on December 28, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama heads back to his vacation home after working out at a gym at the Marine Corps Base in Kaneohe Bay in Hawaii on December 27, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama is seen leaving their vacation home for a hiking trip Kailua, Hawaii, on December 26, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (R) talks to members of the military and their families as First Lady Michelle Obama looks on during a Christmas dinner in Anderson Hall at Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, on December 25, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
Ten-year-old Kyrstin Lavelle poses with an autograph she got from US President Barack Obama reading 'To Kyrstin --Dream big dreams!' at Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe Bay on December 24, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual winter holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
Ten-year-old Kyrstin Lavelle poses with an autograph she got from US President Barack Obama reading 'To Kyrstin --Dream big dreams!' at Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe Bay on December 24, 2013. The first family is in Hawaii for their annual winter holiday vacation. AFP PHOTO/Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
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KAILUA, Hawaii (Reuters) - The serenity of President Barack Obama's Hawaiian vacation was rattled a little on Saturday when demonstrators aired grievances against unmanned aircraft and other issues in a small protest zone near the first family's upscale rented house.

Returning from an early morning gym visit at nearby Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Obama's motorcade passed a few dozen protesters holding signs with slogans including "Drones: Unethical and Illegal," "U.S. Bases Out" and "Close Guantanamo Now." Others expressed their opposition to genetically modified foods.

It marked a second day of peaceful protest surrounding Obama, who is spending a two-week vacation in Kailua with wife Michelle, daughters Malia and Sasha, the first lady's mother, Marian Robinson, and the family's Portuguese Water Dogs, Bo and Sunny.

On Friday evening, as many as 27 protesters turned out to demonstrate against the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact being negotiated between the United States and several Asian and South American countries.

Opponents of TPP say the agreement is being written to benefit large multinational corporations.

"Other than a friendly 'shaka sign' from the president as he drove by in his motorcade, we have not received a formal response from the White House," said Mike Hasselle of the MoveOn Honolulu Council, one of the organizers of the action.

Obama has received mostly a warm reception in and around Honolulu, where he was born and spent much of his boyhood.

Hundreds of onlookers swelled around his motorcade for about four blocks on Friday night after the Obama family dined at Nobu, an award-winning Japanese fusion restaurant, in Waikiki.

As the motorcade pulled away for the 15-mile (24-km) drive back to Kailua, the crowds clapped, cheered and waved, snapping photographs with their cellphones.

(Reporting by Ros Krasny, Suzanne Roig and Ikaika Hussey; Editing by Peter Cooney)

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