With a population of 35,000, Shuafat is a chiefly Arab enclave located in northeastern Jerusalem, sharing borders with Pisgat Ze’ev, Beit Haninah, French Hill and Ramot. The majority of the population of Shuafat is families with children. The area itself is rich with archaeological findings dating back thousands of years. The area where Shuafat is now situated has been intermittently inhabited since 2000 B.C., according to archaeological discoveries in the region. It was once the location of a village called Gebim, which according to the Book of Isaiah was hastily evacuated by its Jewish inhabitants at the threat of an Assyrian invasion.
Excavations have uncovered evidence of a Roman Jewish settlement in the region, believed to be one of the first Jewish settlements in Jerusalem since the destruction of 70 A.D. The settlement shows evidence of Roman planning and sophistication, in the form of orderly architecture and baths. It is believed to have been a Jewish settlement because of the stone vessels found on the site, which Jews in particular customarily used for ritual washing. Shuafat was occupied by Jordan in 1948, and a refugee camp was constructed in the area by the UN in 1964 to alleviate the crowded conditions. After 1967, Shuafat became part of Israeli Jerusalem.
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