Page last updated at 16:21 GMT, Wednesday, 14 May 2008 17:21 UK

Museum of Memories

Exhibits at Shatila Museum of Memories (Photo by Martin Asser)

The "Museum of Memories" is the brainchild of Muhammad al-Khatib, a long-time resident of Shatila camp and former doctor with the UN relief agency.

Dr Khatib has collected about 1,000 items originating from the refugees' former homes in Palestine. They range from tiny household artefacts to things such as coffee grinders, radios and farming equipment.

A house key and samples of soil from former Palestinian villages  (Photo by Martin Asser)

The most symbolic items are the keys to houses Palestinians left behind when their land was captured by Israeli forces during the 1948-49 war.

Many thought they would return after a few weeks or months, but the keys remained unused and many of the houses have been demolished by the Israeli authorities.

Every item is catalogued with the owner's name and details. Dr Khatib sometimes purchases items with his own money, but many are donated or loaned in the knowledge that he will keep them safely and return them if requested.

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