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The Maoris are the indigenous ethnic group that inhabits New Zealand. They arrived from Polynesian islands during the 14th century and became known for their warlike tendencies. They coexisted fairly peacefully with the Europeans who later colonized the islands and the Maoris still make up about 15% of the current population, the second most prominent national ethnic group. They face many problems in New Zealand today, however. They suffer from lower life expectancy and other health problems, including high rates of suicide, obesity, and alcohol and drug abuse; lower incomes; high rates of domestic violence; and a high crime rate, making up nearly half of the New Zealand prison population. Maori students also rank poorly; less than one-half finish school. Maoris are still seeking financial compensation for past historical grievances.
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