Taino Woman teaching at UCLA

Los Angeles, CA (UCTP Taino News) - UCTP Arizona Liaison Officer, DeAnna Sarobei Rivera (Boriken Taino) has just been appointed Lecturer in American Indian Studies and Director of the Tribal Learning Community and Education Exchange Program at UCLA Law School.

This new program is known as TLCEE ("til-c"), and Prof. Rivera will be its first Director. As a lecturer she will be teaching undergraduate, graduate, and law students how to start development (social and economic) projects on Indian reservations. As a director, she will over see a distance learning program that links UCLA Law to Tribal governments, which will help to increase their understanding of Indian law and its impact on their particular tribal interests.

UCTP President Roberto Mucaro Borrero expressed his great pride upon receiving the historic annoucement stating "It is our hope that all our community will join us in extending to our dear sister not only heartfelt congratulations but prayers for her continued success and fortitude. She has made us all very proud."


Information on this program can be found at:

You can reach Prof. Rivera at


AREITO IN BORIKEN (Taino Social Ceremony)

Boriken (UCTP Taino News) - The Caney Quinto Mundo, the Consejo General de Tainos Borincanos, and the United Confederation of Taino People will celebrate a Taino family Areito 24-25 June 2005.

All Taino people are invited to attend, share, dance and sing. Saturday afternoon will include community consultations with regard to national and international initiatives. Camping space available.

For information on confirming participation contact caney@prtc.net or call 787.847.5039.

UCTPTN 06.14.2005

Summer Solstice Ceremony in Boriken

Boriken (UCTP Taino News) - The Caney Quinto Mundo, the United Confederation of Taino People and the Consejo General de Taínos Boricanos will celebrate the summer solstice on Tuesday June 21st at the sacred site of Piedra Escrita in Jayaya, Puerto Rico.

The Boriken solstice ceremony conicides with World Peace and Prayer Day, an international initiative led by Chief Arvol Looking Horse, a Spiritual Leader of the Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota Nations.

The sunrise ceremony is open to all Taino People and will begin at 6:30am. Rain or Shine. For those interested in participating, the organizers have requested confirmation by calling 1.787-847-5039 or sending an email to caney@prtc.net.


Agreement signed to create new ecological refuge

Bayhibe hotels and residents protect their water source*

SANTO DOMINGO. - The La Romana-Bayahibe Hotel Association and the Environment Ministry signed an agreement to creation the Padre Nuestro Ecotourism Center, located within the National Park of the East.

The Association and FIPA -institution which handles funds donated by USAID- , will jointly finance the collaboration project’s first stage, while the Dominican Integral Development Institute (IDDI) is its executor and coordinator.

Various actions will be carried out at the site, among them, the integral environmental cleanup of the zone, inhabited until recently and will continue with the creation of a ecological center for visitors, trail and simple road infrastructures that allow the access to the artesian springs. The project will also reforest with native varieties and rebuild the park ranges stations.

The ecotourism aspect will also include educational trails and an underwater museum in one of the areas many springs and adjustment of springs for reception of visitors. Also a topographical survey; inventory of the Taino art; topographical survey of the caverns and a census of the insects, birds and mammals.

Since the early 1980s, the heavily wooded area of underground water was occupied by settlers who depended on making charcoal from trees, giving rise to a humble community that lacked sanitary infrastructure.

In order to protect their water source, the areas’ hoteliers and the residents of Bayahíbe, along with the USAID and the Dominican Government, built a new village in the town of Benerito to relocate all of Padre Nuestro’s settlers.

*Source: Dominican Today


Side Event: Indigenous Connectivity "WSIS International Indigenous Steering Committee"

Indigenous Connectivity Side Event held in New York at United Nations Headquarters during the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. The event took place on Thursday, May 19, 2005 in Room 9 from 1:15 - 2:45pm with approximately 60 – 65 participants.

Excerpt from Summary issued by Indian and Northern Affairs Canada:

Best Practices, Challenges and the Path Forward (Members, IISC)

Roberto Borrero, Chairman, United Confederation of Taino People

Roberto Borrero, Chairman, United Confederation of Taino People begins by indicating he appreciates efforts of the Government of Canada in this work. Introduces himself as a representative of the United Confederation of Taino People (La Confederacion Unida del Pueblo Taino).

The ICT revolution has helped the Indigenous Peoples of the Caribbean by raising their visibility. This is especially important as many school textbooks do not even acknowledge they continue to exist. ICTs have helped Caribbean Indigenous Peoples connect communities between various islands through computers, videos, and periodicals.

References international border issues in Caribbean Indigenous communities. For example, the Taino people of Puerto Rico cannot interact freely with the Taino people of Cuba. Agrees the IISC has a tough job ahead, and has enjoyed the dialogue to date through virtual meetings.

Reports that IISC Pacific Region representative, Teanau Tuiono, made a presentation hosted by UNESCO and The National Library of New Zealand in relation to Indigenous connectivity and the work of the IISC on May 11, 2005.

Stresses the importance of collaboration between the IISC and the Permanent Forum. Recommends that the IISC liaise more closely with the United Nations Inter-Agency Support Group.

Also recommends that IISC consider obtaining support from the Global Compact of the Secretary-General, a voluntary international corporate citizenship network initiated to support the participation of both the private sector and other social actors to advance responsible corporate citizenship and universal social and environmental principles to meet the challenges of globalization.

Full Summary by INAC:

The Enigma of the Taino Astronomers

By Miguel Lozano DAV/CR

Research done in Antigua and Cuba refers to the possibility that the pre-Hispanic population of the Caribbean identified as Arawaks, of which the Tainos were the more advanced culturally, had rudimentary astronomic knowledge they used in a utilitarian way.

Evidence in Antigua points to the probable existence of an observatory a thousands years ago at the plain of Greencastle Hill, where the position of petroglyphs coincide with celestial points used to identify important moments for agriculture, according to investigations (Orbe No. 51/2002).

The ancient population of the Caribbean may have known when the rains would start, the arrival of hurricane seasons, or determine harvests, by way of a stone calendar, according to the hypothesis which is not yet proven.

Cuban speleogists Racso Fernandez and Jose B. Gonzalez believe that people who arrived from La Española (Dominican Republic and Haiti) created a ceremonial center in Cuba where they carried out astronomic rites to identify the arrival of the rainy seasons.

In the investigation, "The enigma of the native petroglyphs of Cuba and the insular Caribbean," the authors have their interpretation of the Caverna de Patana ceremonial center, in which espeleometric, meteorological and astronomic measures were taken, besides studying pieces of indigenous pottery.

Specialists particularly note the position of a petroglyph of a deity in a cavern located on the southeastern shore of Cuba, supported in mythological stories from La Española and in investigations done in the Dominican Republic.

The experts assure that this is a representation of the God of the Boinayel Rain, found by Dominican petroglyph experts in this country in the Square of Chacuey, Sabila's Cave and the pictography of the El Ferrocarril Cave.

The large stone with drawings of El Gran Cemi occupied the central place in the ceremonial center of the cave located near the population of Patana, Maisi, 100 meters above sea level, in the Eastern province of Guantanamo. The cave was also called the Cave of the Vermin, of Cemi, and the Cave of Water.

Unfortunately the figure was moved to the US by North American archeologist Mark R. Harrington at the beginning of the twentieth Century. It is currently in the basement of the Museum of American Indians in New York.

The investigation by Fenandez and Gonzalez is based on the description of the 1.22 meter stone with petroglyphs made by the North American investigator including his observations and a photo used in his workshop "Cuba before Colon."

According to Harrington "This image was looking to the East and was placed in a way so that at a certain hour of the morning, a sunray entered a crack illuminating his face, at least in June and July."

However, Fernandez and Gonzalez did not believe accidental the location of the figure that represents the rain in a position that permitted its illumination during the Summer Solstice, when the sun reaches its maximum distance of the equator (21 and 22 of June).

Fernandez and Gonzalez believe this date was important for an agricultural tribe in a country like Cuba, with only two climatic stations (dry and rainy) because it marks the moment in which the afternoon rains become almost daily.

The hypothesis is that the pre-Columbian population used the ceremonial center to learn the moment of the beginning of the rainy season, like it is thought was done in Antigua by their relatives.

Observations of the wise man Fernando Ortiz and the investigator Antonio Nuñez Jimenez, both Cubans, point to the possibility that similar rituals could have been done in the cave of Punta del Este, in Isla de la Juventud.

These cases open an incognito about the existence Taino development beyond what was previously thought, although it did not reach the level of their Central American neighbors.

The ethnologist and journalist Odalys Busacron thinks it is probable that the disappearance of the descendants of those ancient people combined with the lack of attention given by the Europeans to the native culture, propitiated the ignorance of the true level of development of Caribbean population.

Although there is still much to confirm it, the attractive hypothesis of the Taino astronomers (or meteorologists) is a puzzle whose solution could change the concept about the Taino culture, considered inferior to others of the same time period.

*Source: http://www.plenglish.com/article.asp?ID={13B9934B-B5E6-4067-8C93-8B2EF345F4A6}&language=EN