Khan Yunis

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54560  dunams (54.56 km²)

Khan Yunis - often spelt Khan Younis or Khan Yunnis - (Arabic: خان يونس‎; literally Jonah's Caravanserai) is a city and adjacent refugee camp in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics the city, its refugee camp, and its immediate surroundings had a total population of 180,000 in 2006.[1] Although Khan Yunis lies only 4 kilometers from the Mediterranean Sea the climate of Khan Yunis is semi-arid region with an annual rainfall of approximately 260 mm.

The Constituency of Khan Yunis has five members on the Palestinian Legislative Council. Following the Palestinian legislative election, 2006, there were three Hamas members, including Yunis al-Astal; and two Fatah members, including Mohammed Dahlan.

Contents

History

Before the 14th century, Khan Yunis was a village known as Salqah.[2] To protect caravans, pilgrims and travelers a khan was constructed there by Yunus al-Nûzûri in 789 Hijri / 1387 CE according to an inscription on its main entrance, accounting for the new name of the growing town.[2] (Yunis Ibn Abdallah an-Nawruzi ad-Dawadar was the executive Secretary, one of the high ranking officials of Sultan Barquq and the first Circassian Mamluk Sultan.)[citation needed] The town became an important center for trade and its weekly Thursday market drew traders from neighboring regions.[citation needed] The khan served as resting stop for couriers of the barid, the Mamluk postal network in Palestine and Syria.

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