Burj Shemali Camp

Girl holding hands

Burj Shemali camp is located three kms from the city of Tyre in south Lebanon. It was established in 1948 to provide tented shelter for refugees arriving from Hawla, Tiberias, Saffuri and Lubieh. The camp also hosts displaced Palestine refugees from other parts of Lebanon. It was badly damaged during the Israeli invasion in 1982.

There is a very high incidence of thalassemia and sickle cell disease (genetic disorder) among Burj Shemali inhabitants and the camp is one of the poorest camps in Lebanon. Unemployment is extremely high, with seasonal agricultural work the most common source of income for both men and women.

The ongoing Syria crisis has also led an influx of Syrian refugees and Palestinian refugees from Syria (PRS) in the camp, further straining the infrastructure and services.


We provide services in 12 Palestine refugee camps in Lebanon. UNRWA does not administer or police the camps, as this is the responsibility of the host authorities.

Quick Facts

Refugees in camps

  • There are 24,929 UNRWA registered persons in Burj Shemali as of June 2018*

*This figure does not claim to represent the actual number present in the country as, for example, Palestine refugees may have left over the years and UNRWA does not track the habitual movement of refugees out of its fields of operation.

Official camps

  • Burj Shemali camp was established in 1948 near Tyre in southern Lebanon.
  • There is a high incidence of Thalassemia and sickle-cell disease among its inhabitants.
Unrwa In Burj Shemali Camp


  • UNRWA runs three primary schools in Burj Shemali camp for about 1,900 Palestine refugee students, including PRS.
  • Secondary-age students attend the Aqsa Secondary School in Rashidieh camp.

RSS staff

  • UNRWA provides assistance at the rate of US$ 120 per person per year through e-cards as a form of social protection to more than 1,100 families.