The research is based on 1200 DNA samples taken throughout the island with some test areas revealing 90% of the subjects with Native ancestry. While the percentages are lower than similar studies conducted on the neighboring island of Puerto Rico, the estimates defy “popular” accounts that the Indigenous Peoples were completely exterminated on that island.
“This study is a confirmation of what we have already known and promoted for years” stated Roberto Borrero, a representative of the United Confederation of Taino People. “Our people continue to exist within the multi-cultural mosaic that is the Caribbean despite the genocidal campaigns that began against us 516 years ago with the arrival of Columbus.”
One interesting aspect of the study is that individuals tested in the Cibao region seem to have a different DNA sequence than those tested in the southern part of the island. While both sequences are indigenous the variants could shed some light on ancient migrations. The study also reveals that the Taino descendants from the Cibao area could have been relatively “un-mixed racially” until more recent times.