Editor’s note (13 November 2007): This video is currently unavailable.
In May 2007 the Nahr al-Bared refugee camp, home to around 40,000 Palestinian refugees, became the site of a three-month battle between the Lebanese army and the extremist group Fatah al-Islam that had established itself in the camp. During the fighting over 40 Palestinian civilians, 167 Lebanese soldiers and over 200 Fatah al-Islam militants were killed. All 40,000 of the camp’s refugees were displaced. From the official end of the fighting in early September until 10 October the camp has been exclusively under the control of the Lebanese army.
When parts of the “new camp” area of Nahr al-Bared were re-opened and the first thousand families were allowed to return, they returned to houses that had been burnt, looted and vandalized. Witnesses attest to what appears to be a systematic pattern of burning and looting. Racist graffiti written in many homes in the camp is accompanied by the names of various Lebanese army commando groups.
Until now no military or independent investigation has been carried out, although Amnesty International has written to the Lebanese government calling for an investigation to be initiated and those responsible to be held accountable.
Journalists and human rights organizations are being denied entry to the camp. This short documentary focuses on the looting and burning of Nahr al-Bared camp.
This video was produced by Ray Smith. He can be reached at nahralbared AT riseup DOT net.