Jenin (/dʒəˈniːn/; Arabic: جنين (help·info)
Ǧinīn) is a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank. It serves as
the administrative center of the
Jenin Governorate and is a major
center for the surrounding towns. In 2007 the city
had a population of 39,004.
Jenin is under the administration of
the Palestinian Authority.
2.1 Mamluk era
2.2 Ottoman era
2.3 British Mandate period
2.4 1948 War
2.5 Jordanian control
2.6 Contemporary period
6 Public institutions and landmarks
7 Education and culture
10 External links
Jenin was known in ancient times as the village of "Ein-Jenin" or "Tel
Jenin". Tell Jenin, is located at the center of what is today
Jenin's business district.
Jenin has been identified as the place Gina mentioned in the Amarna
letters from the 14th century BCE.
Four terracotta lamps of Phoenician origin dated to the 8th century
BCE were discovered in Ain
Jenin by archaeologist G. I. Harding, and
are interpreted as attesting to some form of contact and exchange
between the residents of
Jenin at that time and those of Phoenicia.
During the Roman era,
Jenin was called "Ginae," and was settled
exclusively by Samaritans (Heb. כותים). The people of Galilee
were disposed to pass through their city during the annual pilgrimages
Ceramics dating from the Byzantine era have been found here.
Dimashki, writing around year 1300, said that after the rise of "Turk
power", the empire was divided into nine (sub-) "Kingdoms", or
Jenin was listed as one of the places belonging to the
(sub-) Kingdom centred at Safad.
Jenin as "a small and beautiful town, lying between
Nabulus and Baisan, in the
Jordan Province. There is much water, and
many springs are found here, and often have I visited it."
In the late 13th century, Mamluk emirs stationed at
Jenin were ordered
by Qalawun, the sultan, "to ride every day with their troops before
the fortress of 'Akka, so as to protect the coast and the
Jenin by David Roberts, 1839
Street scene in Jenin, 1917. An Ottoman Army soldier (center left)
with a local resident (center right)
During Ottoman rule in Palestine (1517-1918), Jenin,
Lajjun and the
Carmel area, were for part of the 17th century ruled by the Bedouin
Turabay family. In the census of 1596,
Jenin was located in the
nahiya of Jenin, in the liwa of Lajjun. It had a population of 8
households, all Muslim. They paid a fixed tax rate of 25 % on
agricultural products, including wheat, barley, summer crops, goats
and beehives, in addition to occasional revenues; a total of 2,000
akçe. All of the revenue went to a
Waqf in the name of Sultan
In the mid-18th century,
Jenin was designated the administrative
capital of the combined districts of
Lajjun and Ajlun. There are
indications that the area comprising
functionally autonomous under Ottoman rule and that the empire
struggled to collect taxes there. During the Napoleonic Campaign in
Egypt which extended into
Syria and Palestine in 1799, a local
Jenin wrote a poem enumerating and calling upon local
Arab leaders to resist Bonaparte, without mentioning the
Sultan or the
need to protect the Ottoman Empire.
In the late 19th century, some members of the Jarrar family, who
formed part of the mallakin (elite land-owning families) in Jenin,
cooperated with merchants in
Haifa to set up an export enterprise
there. During the Ottoman era,
Jenin was plagued by local warfare
between members of the same clan. The French explorer Guérin
visited in 1870. In 1882, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey
of Western Palestine described
Jenin as "The capital of the district,
the seat of a Caimacam, a town of about 3,000 inhabitants, with a
small bazaar. The houses are well built of stone. There are two
families of Roman Catholics; the remainder are Moslems. A spring rises
east of the town and is conducted to a large masonry reservoir, near
the west side, of good squared stonework, with a long stone trough.
This reservoir was built by 'And el Hady, Mudir of Acre, in the first
half of the century [..], north of the town is the little mosque of
'Ezz ed Din, with a good- sized dome and a minaret."
British Mandate period
Jenin dynamited by British forces, 1938
According to a census conducted in 1922 by the British Mandate
Jenin had a population of 2,637, consisting of 2,307
Muslims, 7 Jews, 108 Christians, 212 Hindus and 3 Sikhs. From
Jenin became a center of rebellion against the British Mandatory
authorities. By the summer of 1938, residents of the city embarked on
"an intensified campaign of murder, intimidation and sabotage" that
caused the British administration "grave concern," according to a
British report to the League of Nations. The city played an
important role in the 1936–39 Arab revolt in Palestine, prompted by
the death of
Izz ad-Din al-Qassam
Izz ad-Din al-Qassam in a fire-fight with British
colonial police at the nearby town of
Ya'bad months prior to the start
of the revolt. On 25 August 1938, the day after the British Assistant
District Commissioner was assassinated in his
Jenin office, a large
British force with explosives entered the town. After ordering the
inhabitants to leave, about one quarter of the town was blown up.
Jenin was used by Fawzi al-Qawuqji's
Arab Liberation Army
Arab Liberation Army as a base.
In the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, the city was defended by the Iraqi Army,
then captured briefly by the forces from Israel's Carmeli Brigade
during the "Ten Days' fighting" following the cancellation of the
first cease-fire. Prior to the battle, the city's residents fled
temporarily. The offensive was actually a feint designed to draw
Arab forces away from the critical Siege of Jerusalem, and gains in
that sector were quickly abandoned when Arab reinforcements arrived.
Jenin refugee camp was founded in 1953 by
Jordan to house
displaced Palestinians who fled or were expelled during the 1948 War.
For 19 years, the city was under Jordanian control. A war cemetery for
Iraqi soldiers and local combatants is located on the outskirts of
The Jordanian census of 1961 found 14,402 inhabitants in Jenin.
A street in Jenin, 2011
In 1967, on the first day of the Six-Day War,
Jenin was occupied by
Israel Defense Forces.
Israel handed over control of the city to the Palestinian
National Authority in keeping with the Oslo Accords. Known to
Palestinians as "the martyrs' capital", the camp's militants, some 200
armed men, included members of Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, Tanzim,
Palestinian Islamic Jihad
Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and Hamas. By Israel's count,
at least 28 suicide bombers were dispatched from the
Jenin camp from
2000–2003 during the Second Intifada. Israeli army weekly
Bamahane attributes at least 31 militant attacks, totaling 124
Jenin during the same period, more than any other city in
the West Bank.
During the al-Aqsa Intifada,
Israel launched Operation Defensive
Shield with the stated aim of dismantling terrorist infrastructure so
as to curb suicide bombings and other militant activities. The army
encircled and entered six major Palestinian population centers in the
West Bank, among them Jenin. During the
Battle of Jenin
Battle of Jenin in April 2002,
23 Israeli soldiers and 52 Palestinians, including civilians ,
Human Rights Watch
Human Rights Watch reported that the refugee camp,
which was the major battleground, suffered extensive damage. Witnesses
stated unarmed people were shot and denied medical treatment, as a
Human Rights Watch
Human Rights Watch have regarded many killings to be
unlawful such as the death of a 57-year-old wheelchair bound man who
was shot and run over by a tank despite having attached a white flag
on his wheelchair. A 37-year-old man who was paralysed was crushed
under the rubble of his house, his family was refused to be allowed to
remove his body. A 14-year-old boy was killed as he travelled to
purchase groceries during the temporary relief of the curfew that was
imposed by the army. Medical staff were shot at (one nurse killed)
while trying to reach the wounded even after clearly being in uniform
displaying the red crescent symbol. There have also been reports
of Israeli soldiers using Palestinians as human shields, one father
described how a soldier rested his rifle on his 14-year-old son's
shoulder as he shot.
Israel denied the entry of rescue teams and
Jenin even after they withdrew. Over the following
Jenin was subject to extended curfews and targeted killings.
During a gun-battle with Islamic Jihad militants whom
Israel says were
firing at troops from inside the UN compound, an Israeli military
sniper shot and killed a UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) employee,
Iain Hook (54) on November 22, 2002. The sniper reportedly mistook
a cellphone in Hook's hands for a gun or grenade.
In the framework of the Valley of Peace initiative, a joint
Arab-Israeli project is under way to promote tourism in the Jenin
region. In 2010, 600 new businesses opened in Jenin. The
Canaan Fair Trade is headquartered in Jenin. Director of the
Freedom Theater in Jenin, Juliano Mer-Khamis, was killed by masked
gunmen in the city in April 2011. Mer-Khamis co-founded the theatre
with Zakaria Zubeidi, former military chief of the al-Aqsa Brigades
who had renounced violence.
Jenin is situated at the foot of the rugged northernmost hills (Jabal
Nablus) of the West Bank, and along the southern edge of the Jezreel
Valley (Marj Ibn Amer), which the city overlooks. Its highest
elevation is about 250 meters above sea level and its lowest areas are
90 meters above sea level. Immediately southwest of
Jenin is the
Sahl Arraba plain (Dothan Valley), while further south is the Marj
Sanur valley. About 1.5 kilometers to Jenin's east is Mount Gilboa
Jenin is 42 kilometers north of Nablus, 18 kilometers to the south of
Afula, and 51 kilometers southeast of Haifa. The nearest
Umm at-Tut and
Jalqamus to the southeast,
Zababdeh to the south, Burqin to the southwest,
Kafr Dan to the west,
Jalamah and the Arab Israeli village of
Muqeible to the
Deir Ghazaleh to the northeast, and
Beit Qad and Deir Abu Da'if
to the east.
Jenin municipality was established in 1886 under the Ottoman rule with
no more than 80 voters and elections were made every 4 years until
1982 when the Israeli government took control over the municipality
until 1995.
Abdulrahman Al-Haj Hassan
Al-Haj Hassan Fazaa'
Saleh Arif Azzouqa
Ahmed Kamal Al-saa'di
Ahmed Shawki Al-Mahmoud
Waleed Abu Mwais (appointed)
Municipal elections were held in
Jenin on 15 December 2005. Six seats
each were won by
Hamas and the local coalition of
Fatah and the
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
Jenin was one of
several Palestinian cities where
Hamas showed a dramatic growth in
electoral support.  The mayor of
Jenin is Hadem Rida.
According to the 2007 census by the Palestinian Central Bureau of
Jenin had a population of 39,004, the
Camp of 10,371 with 9,571 registered refugees on 373 dunams
(92 acres). Some 42.3% of the population of the camp was under
the age of 15.
2,706 + 68
Public institutions and landmarks
Khalil Suleiman Hospital is located in Jenin.
The city has a monument honoring German pilots shot down in Jenin
First World War
First World War which incorporates an original wooden
propeller. An old British Mandate landing strip, Muqeible
Airfield, is located in Jenin. The main and largest mosque of
the Fatima Khatun Mosque, built in 1566.
Education and culture
Arab American University
Arab American University in Jenin
Arab American University
Arab American University is located in Jenin's vicinity.
Cinema Jenin is the largest movie theater in the area. The theater,
which reopened in 2010 after a 23-year intermission, has indoor and
outdoor screens, a film library and educational facilities.Strings
of Freedom is an orchestra in
Jenin founded by an Israeli Arab, Wafaa
Younis, who travels form her home in central
Israel to teach music to
the local youth.
Since 2010, the
Gilboa Regional Council has been working with the
Jenin district authorities on the development of joint tourism
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Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Jenin.
Welcome To Jinin Refugee Camp
Survey of Western Palestine, Map 8: IAA, Wikimedia commons
Who Lives In
Jenin Refugee Camp?: A Brief Statistical Profile (2002)
A project aimed at reopening a movie theater for the residents of
Jenin and the refugee camp.
Peace and Prosperity in the
West Bank in-depth report on NOW on PBS
Jenin documentary on PBS wide angle
Jenin Friendship Association (website)[permanent dead
Jenin Friendship Association (photos)
Arraba (Wadi Da'quq • al-Mansura)
al-Yamun (Khirbet Suruj)
Dahiyat Sabah al-Kheir
Deir Abu Da'if
Khirbet Abdallah al-Yunis
Cities administered by the State of Palestine
Rawabi (under construction)
*From June 2007, the
Gaza Strip has been under de facto Hamas
Palestine refugee camps
Palestine refugee camps locations and populations as of 2015
518,000 UNRWA refugees
188,150 UNRWA refugees
319,958 UNRWA refugees
188,850 UNRWA refugees
355,500 UNRWA refugees
Al-Shati (Beach camp)
'Azza (Beit Jibrin)
Ein Beit al-Ma'
Ein Beit al-Ma' (Camp No. 1)
Khan Eshieh (ar)
Qabr Essit (ar)
Ein Al-Tal (ar)
Amman New Camp
Amman New Camp (Wihdat)
Husn (Martyr Azmi el-Mufti camp)
^ "Camp Profiles". unrwa.org. United Nations Relief and Works Agency
for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. Retrieved 2 July 2015.