I had a look at ftdna Romaniote page.
It has 25 persons. Four are ungrouped and show no indication of Greece.
If we look at the other members we see one other person that is uncertain to be Romaniote, since he is from Russia. Two other persons could be Romaniote, despite they are not from Greece. They are from Turkey and Romania, both closely bordering the Romaniote region that originated in Greece.See Romaniote Jews in wikipedia.
The remaining people(20) have in total 13 recent ancestors. We have three branches that have 2 persons and two branches that have 3 persons.
Some of them are already in the list of branches:
The first two are probably Romaniote completely. The last two are far from the center of that group. It probably means their shared ancestor lived before the line went to the Ashkenazi countries and increased in size.
For J1-L817-L816 the distance to the center of the group is fairly small. More study is needed to decide whether the shared ancestor lived in long ago in Greece, or the person arrived later in Greece and became a member of the Romaniote community.
The other 8 members have haplogroups:
The distribution shows that at least a part of these people came from other locations.
- E1b-L117, less than 67 markers
- G-M201, probably U1, not in semargl database
- G-M278 was added and likely Sephardic
- J2a-L26 was added, uncertain if the person was Romaniote
- J2-M172, less than 67 markers
- Q-L213 = L53 was added
- R1a-Z283, less than 67 markers
- R1b-P312 was added
- R1b-M269, less than 67 markers
Q: Is it possible that all or the large majority originated in the Middle East?
A: No, it is extremely unlikely to find a R1b-P312 in the Middle East, so not all of the orginate in the Middle East. It is possible that a the large majority originates in the Middle East. The distribution and narrow character of the branches make it well possible that a large majority originates in the Middle East. It is also still possible that half became Jewish in Greece. The E1b, R1b, J2b and e.g. one of the G's could have become Jewish in Greece. It is unlikely that all branches became Jewish in Greece, since we would not expect Q, and the amount of G and J1 in that scenario.
One of the main uncertainties of this page is the origin of these people. It is likely that the majority of the Greek Jews have Sephardic origin, it is also possible tha a serious part have Romaniote origin. With the quality of information that is available at this moment, the difference between the two groups can not be made with a high certainty.
Thessaloniki = Salonica
For many years Salonica was the largest city with a majority of Jews, see the wikipedia page> on the subject.
On this page one can see the Synagogues in Salonica. The first group can directly from Spain, and the second period a large group came from southern Italy.