G. Parker and P. Hickling (The Weekend Sun, February 1) are using outdated dictionary meanings of the word indigenous.
It is now common scientific knowledge that the whole world was populated by human migration starting from Africa about 100,000 years ago. Every region in the world was settled by migrants. Australian Aborigines have not been in Australia forever. They migrated there from Asia.
Dictionaries that say that indigenous people had ancestors that had been there forever and did not come from another country are outdated. The United Nations recognises indigenous peoples as simply the first settlers in any region.
In reply to R. Baker, the beliefs of Maori in 1840 have been overtaken by modern scientific knowledge, and it is not disrespectful to Maori to say so. Radiocarbon dating led by Janet Wilmshurst covered 112 known sites of early settlement in New Zealand.
They were all settled by Maori. There is no reliable evidence of Moriori or any other residents in New Zealand before Maori arrived, which is why Maori are on the United Nations’ list of indigenous peoples.
P Dey, Welcome Bay.