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UN Relief & Works Agency (UNRWA):
Jordan Refugee Camp Profiles

(Updated January 2013)


UNRWA: Table of Contents | Jordan Refugee Stats | What is UNRWA?


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Amman New Camp -- Baqa'a -- Husn -- Irbid -- Jabal el-Hussein
Jerash -- Marka -- Souf -- Talbieh -- Zarqa

Amman New Camp

  • More than 51,500 registered refugees
  • 13 schools
  • One health center
  • One community-based rehabilitation center
  • One women’s program center

Amman New Camp, known locally as Wihdat, was one of four camps set up after 1948 to accommodate Palestine refugees who left Palestine as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. The camp was established in 1955 on an area of 0.48 square kilometers, southeast of Amman. The refugees were initially housed in 1,400 shelters constructed by UNRWA, and in 1957 the Agency built 1,260 additional shelters. Over the years the refugees added more rooms to improve their shelters and the camp has grown into an urban-like quarter surrounded by areas of high population density. UNRWA's installations in the camp also provide services for the refugees in the camp's surroundings. Amman New Camp is very overcrowded. Kiosks and haphazard stalls add to the disorganization on crowded streets.

Baqa'a

  • More than 104,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • 16 schools
  • One food distribution center
  • Two health centers
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Baqa'a camp was one of six "emergency" camps set up in 1968 to accommodate Palestine refugees and displaced people who left the West Bank and Gaza Strip as a result of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. The camp, which is the largest in Jordan, is about 20km north of Amman. Between June 1967 and February 1968, the refugees and displaced people were housed in temporary camps in the Jordan valley, but had to be moved when military operations escalated in the area. When Baqa'a was set up it was already a large camp, with 5,000 tents for 26,000 refugees over an area of 1.4 square kilometers Between 1969 and 1971, UNRWA replaced the tents with 8,000 prefabricated shelters, to protect people from the harsh winters in Jordan. Most of the camp's inhabitants have since built more durable concrete shelters.

Husn

  • More than 22,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools, in two buildings
  • One food distribution center
  • One health center
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Husn camp, known locally as Martyr Azmi el-Mufti camp, was one of the six "emergency" camps set up in 1968 for 12,500 Palestine refugees and displaced people who left the West Bank and Gaza Strip as a result of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. The camp is 80km north of Amman. The inhabitants were initially accommodated in tents, in an area of 0.77 square kilometers UNRWA originally planned to provide stronger tents to withstand the harsh winters, but between 1969 and 1971 built 2,990 prefabricated shelters instead. Over the years, many of the refugees have replaced these with more durable structures.

Irbid

  • More than 25,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools, run on double shifts
  • One food distribution center
  • Two health centers
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Irbid camp was one of four camps established in Jordan for refugees who left Palestine as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. The camp was set up in 1951 on an area of 0.24 square kilometers near the town of Irbid, in northern Jordan. Originally, it housed 4,000 refugees. By 1954, the camp's inhabitants started to replace the tents with mud shelters and UNRWA provided them with roofing material. Over the years the refugees have replaced these dwellings with concrete shelters and the camp now resembles some of the urban quarters in Irbid. UNRWA's installations in the camp also provide services for the refugees in the camp's surroundings.

Jabal el-Hussein

  • More than 29,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools
  • One food distribution center
  • One health center
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Jabal el-Hussein camp is one of four camps established in Jordan after 1948 to accommodate refugees who left Palestine as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. The camp was set up in 1952 for 8,000 refugees on an area of 0.42 square kilometers, northwest of Amman The refugees replaced the original tents with more durable shelters and UNRWA provided roofing. The camp has since grown into an urban-like quarter and has become part of Amman. As with other camps in Jordan, Jabal el-Hussein camp faces severe overcrowding. There is no space for further building. UNRWA runs 12 installations to provide services for camp refugees.

Jerash

  • More than 24,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools in two double-shift buildings
  • One food distribution center
  • One health center
  • One community-based rehabilitation center
  • One camp development office

Jerash camp was set up as an "emergency" camp in 1968 for 11,500 Palestine refugees and displaced persons who left the Gaza Strip as a result of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. It is known locally as Gaza camp. The camp covers an area of 0.75 square kilometers and is situated 5km from the famous Roman ruins of Jerash. After 1967 UNRWA quickly set up facilities for food aid, sanitation, health services and education.

In order to withstand the harsh winters, the original 1,500 tents were replaced with prefabricated shelters. Between 1968 and 1971, 2,000 shelters were built with support from emergency donations. Over the years, many of the camp’s inhabitants have replaced the prefabs with more durable concrete shelters. Many roofs are still made of corrugated zinc and asbestos sheets, which can cause diseases such as cancer.

Marka

  • More than 53,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Ten schools
  • One distribution center
  • Two health centers
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Marka camp, referred to by the government as Hitten, was established in 1968 on an area of 0.92 square kilometers, 10km northeast of Amman. The camp is known locally as Schneller after the German rehabilitation center established in the area before the camp was set up. Many camp residents originally came from the Gaza Strip. UNRWA's installations in the camp also provide services for the refugees in the camp's surroundings.

Souf

  • More than 20,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools in two double-shift buildings
  • One food distribution center
  • One health center
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Souf camp was one of the six "emergency" camps set up for Palestine refugees and displaced people who left the West Bank and Gaza Strip during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. The camp covers an area of 0.5 square kilometers and is near the famous Roman ruins of Jerash, 50km north of Amman.

The camp was abandoned in October 1967 because of the harsh weather conditions and heavy rainfall, and its inhabitants were accommodated in a tented camp in the Jordan valley. This temporary camp was abandoned in 1968 after an escalation in military operations in the area, and the refugees and displaced persons returned to Souf. UNRWA's plans for providing more durable tents to withstand the harsh winters were dropped in favor of constructing 1,650 prefabricated shelters.

Talbieh

  • More than 7,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools
  • One health center
  • One community-based rehabilitation center

Talbieh camp was one of six "emergency" camps set up in 1968 for 5,000 Palestine refugees and displaced persons who left the West Bank and Gaza Strip as a result of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. Unlike the other camps in Jordan, Talbieh's inhabitants were mainly displaced persons, not refugees. Also, residents are mostly Bedouin. Talbieh was set up on an area of about 0.13 square kilometers, 35km south of Amman. It is the largest camp in terms of state land. Tents were donated by the Iranian Red Lion and Sun Society, who later replaced them with concrete shelters. Many shelters are in a bad state of repair with zinc or asbestos sheet roofs, structural problems, and poor natural light and ventilation.

Zarqa

  • More than 20,000 registered refugees
  • One women’s program center
  • Four schools
  • Two health centers
  • One community-based rehabilitation center
  • One distribution center
  • One environmental health office
  • One kindergarten/nursery

Zarqa camp is the oldest Palestine refugee camp in Jordan, and was one of the four camps established in the country to accommodate the refugees who left Palestine as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. The camp was set up near the town of Zarqa by the International Committee of the Red Cross in 1949. It originally housed 8,000 refugees in an area of 0.18 square kilometers UNRWA later replaced the original tents with concrete shelters and over the years the refugees have made improvements and added more rooms. The camp now resembles other urban quarters in Zarqa.


Sources: UNRWA

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