Bourj el-Barajneh (Arabic: برج البراجنة, "Tower of Towers") is a municipality located in the southern suburbs of Beirut, in Lebanon. The municipality lies between Beirut International Airport and the town of Haret Hreik.
Its local population are mainly Shia Muslims but due to its cheap housing and hospitable locals, it has acquired a sizable Sunni, Kurdish, Iraqi and other poor and/or refugee populations that reside mainly in and around the local Palestinian refugee camp.
The Bourj el-Barajneh Refugee Camp is located at the edge of the municipality. The League of Red Cross Societies established the camp in 1948 to accommodate an influx of Palestinian refugees from the Galilee in present-day northern Israel. The camp was laid siege to by the Israeli army and Lebanese Christian Phalangists during 1982, after Israel invaded Lebanon earlier that year. It (and other Palestinian Camps) was also laid siege to by Amal militia from February 1984 to February 1987 for the control of West Beirut. According to UNRWA more than 20,000 Palestinian refugees live in the camp, though originally only 10,000 were planned to live in the one square kilometer site. After the crisis in Syria, many Syrian refugees moved to the camp, dramatically increasing its population. The camp conditions are horrible, and many deaths are recorded every year from electrocution and collapsing buildings.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bourj el-Barajneh.|
- CEPAL.ca Bourj el-Barajneh refugee camp
- Burj El-Barajneh Refugee Camp, articles from UNRWA.
- Time Magazine - "On The Brink of Cannibalism. 23 February 1987.
- Burj el-Barajneh Camp: A Photo Essay. Alternative Media Centre of Québec (CMAQ), 7 November 2005.