IOM in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BH)

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BH) is located at a migration crossroad between Eastern and Western Europe. The conflict in the former Yugoslavia from 1992 to 1995 destroyed the social and economic infrastructure and forced over half of citizens of BH to leave their homes. Today, the return of displaced persons and a rise in illegal migration, such as human trafficking and smuggling, make migration a major challenge for BH’s post-conflict recovery and development.

IOM initiated a mission in Sarajevo in 1992 in the basement of Koševo Hospital, setting up the MEDEVAC programme to evacuate war-wounded individuals who could not be treated locally. Following the end of the war, IOM expanded its activities to the return of refugees from abroad and to assist BH nationals resettling in third countries. Today, IOM’s programmes aim to prevent irregular migration, stop the trafficking of human beings, contribute to national development, and assist the BH Government to manage migration activities.

Mission statement

IOM is committed to the principle that humane and orderly migration benefits migrants and society.

As the leading international organization for migration, IOM acts with its partners in the international community to:

  • Assist in meeting the growing operational challenges of migration management,
  • Advance understanding of migration issues,
  • Encourage social and economic development through migration, and
  • Uphold the human dignity and well-being of migrants.

Latest News and Events

  • Two youth groups from Foca and representatives of the IOM last Friday signed contracts on the implementation of the projects "To hear us louder" and "Sport and reconstruction of a youth outings spot for greater youth activism"


    Two youth groups from Foca and representatives of the IOM last Friday signed contracts on the implementation of the projects "To hear us louder" and "Sport and reconstruction of a youth outings spot for greater youth activism", nominated at the third "Community Dialogue". The importance of these projects has been recognized and it shows the fact that the local community will participate in their implementation with 50% of the funds. 

  • Signed contracts on the construction of a children's playground in Jablanica


    Contracts on the construction of a children's playground as well as the furnishing of the room for staying, learning and quality time for youth from the area of the Glogosnica (Jablanica) and surrounding places, were signed by representatives of youth and IOM representatives. These projects were proposed by youth, and excellent cooperation was realized with "Suljo Cilic" Primary School, Jablanica Municipality, Community Council, NGOs and Youth Club "Under the same sun".

  • The fourth MoviEQ workshop was held in Gornji Rahic


    The fourth MoviEQ workshop for youth from the local communities of Gornji Rahic and Maoca was ended with the award of the Cambridge University Certificate on completed education. The youth had the opportunity to learn more about active listening and thinking, and the workshop marked a lot of positive energy and the desire of youth to raise their integrative complexity to a higher level with newly acquired vows.

  • Third MoviEQ workshop was held in Capljina


    Eight young people from Capljina, participants of the third MoviEQ (4 - 7 March) workshop, received Cambridge University certificates on successfully completion of trainig, which was organized within the project "Community Based Approach to Support Youth in Targeted Municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina"! Through participation in the workshop, they had the opportunity to develop their emotional intelligence and critical thinking, and thus move away from the black-and-white view of the world.

  • Building lighting up to the "Zabrana" Mountain Lodge


    Youth from Foca have made admirable job! Gathered around the idea of building lighting up to the "Zabrana" Mountain Lodge, a project significant for all fellow citizens, they organized a lecture about hiking for pupils of the "Sveti Sava" Primary School and an evening hike for about a hundred fellow citizens. They had the opportunity to walk in a lighted and safe path to a favorite picnic area, which is the result of youth activism.

Latest Vacancy

IOM Director General’s Message on International Women's Day 2015

By William Lacy Swing

More women are on the move than ever before. They represent approximately half of the world’s one billion migrants and are approximately half of the estimated 51 million displaced persons.

On this year’s International Women’s Day, IOM calls on the international community to ensure the empowerment of migrant and displaced women through the full realization of their human rights.


Japan Backs Reconstruction, Disaster Preparedness Projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Following catastrophic floods in May 2014, the Government of Japan yesterday (23/2) committed 6.2 million Bosnian Marks (USD 700,000) for two one-year projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). IOM will implement the BM 1.2 million Repair and Reconstruction of Centres for Disabled Children in Bosnia and Herzegovina project, which will repair and reconstruct five centres for children with disabilities, which were seriously damaged in the May 2014 floods.


IOM study “Labour Mobility as a Factor of Development in South-Eastern Europe”

This country reports are part of the broader IOM study “Labour Mobility as a Factor of Development in South-Eastern Europe” conducted within a project funded by the IOM Development Fund and implemented by IOM in partnership with the governments in the region in 2014. The research team produced seven separate reports for Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, UNSC resolution 1244-administered Kosovo, Serbia and one regional overview. The seven reports looked at the policies and regulative mechanisms which govern labour mobility, in terms of their approaches in facilitating movements of specific categories of migrant workers, consistency with evolving regional objectives and compliance with the EU acquis and standards.



Within the project ‘’Scaling up Universal Access for Most at Risk Populations in Bosnia and Herzegovina –mobile populations’’ (HIV/AIDS Round 9), supported through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP BiH), funded by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM), IOM Sarajevo hold two trainings from 16.09.- 19.09.2014, on HIV/AIDS and Mobility for municipal level health care professionals who provide healthcare services to – among others - migrants and mobile populations.


The Educational-Experiential Workshops Titled “Preservation of Mental Health of the Soldiers-Rescuers upon Participation in Crisis Interventions” held

During August and September 2014, within the implementation of the Project of provision of psycho-social support to the population affected by floods during May 2014, educational-experiential workshops have been held with topic “Preservation of mental health of soldiers-rescuers upon participation in crisis interventions”.


Special High Level Event Devoted to the First Observation of the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

UN Headquarters, New York, July 14, 2014

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is a pleasure for me to be here today and to represent the International Organization for Migration at this important event to observe, for the first time, the World’s Day Against trafficking in persons.