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.
During the migrant and refugee crisis in 2015 - 2016, IOM - the UN Migration Agency - together with the international community, scaled up its presence in Greece and the Western Balkans, and in particular in North Macedonia and Serbia part of the so-called Western Balkan route, to support national authorities and civil society in responding to the emergency situation, and providing direct assistance and protection to migrants, particularly those most vulnerable to violence, exploitation and abuse, or a violation of their rights.
Following the significant increase of migrant arrivals to Bosnia and Herzegovina in late 2017, IOM, in coordination with State, Entity, cantonal and local authorities, scaled up its operations in key migrant locations across the country through the reinforcement of IOM Mobile Protection Teams. These mobile teams have been operating since June 2017, assisting migrants in vulnerable situations, providing safe transportation, interpretation services, provision of temporary and protection-sensitive accommodation, food and other necessities.
IOM Mobile Protection Teams – strategically located to be able to cover the entire migration route, from the Eastern border with Serbia and Montenegro to the North-West border with Croatia, and the main reception centres and informal settlements – performed vulnerability screenings and referred migrants to appropriate assistance and protection service providers.
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Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) is an indispensable part of a comprehensive approach to migration managemen aiming at orderly and humane return and reintegration of migrants who are unable or unwilling to remain in host or transit countries and wish to return voluntarily to their countries of origin.
The successful implementation of AVRR programmes requires the cooperation and participation of a broad range of actors, including the migrants, civil society and the governments in both host and transit countries and countries of origin. The partnerships created by IOM and a diverse range of national and international stakeholders are essential to the effective implementation of AVRR – from the return preparation to the reintegration stage.
Within this project, seven audio books have been recorded so far. The complete set of these audio books was donated to all local IOM teams in 14 municipalities in Bosnia and Herzego
vina where the project "Moving to sustainable approach in the prevention of violent extremism in the Western Balkans“ is being implemented, which they will share in their local community.
Through this exhibit, they want to present young volunteers and activists who worked for the wellbeing of their community and to encourage other youth to join actions of this kind. This exhibit is set in high school in Bužim and it will be open for the next five days. Besides for the students of this school, the exhibit is open for all citizens of Bužim.
In the framework of the Joint UN project “Seeking Care, Justice and Support Survivors of Conflict Related Sexual Violence in BiH” IOM will further continue to support the implementation of the newly adopted Law by providing expert and technical support. The Law opens the possibility for CRSV survivors to access the rights and to gain the recognition through the status of victims of torture. It is very important to maintain non-discriminatory and equal access to status and rights making sure that victims are recognized and treated with dignity.
Eleven young people have, through interesting and interactive games and presentations, learned about a different view of the world, the world that is full of colors and not necessary black or white.
JAPANESE GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES, IOM, ORAŠJE MUNICIPALITY AND POSAVINA CANTON ARE GOING TO OFFICIALLY OPEN THE CENTRE FOR CHILDREN AND PERSONS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS IN ORAŠJE
On 11.12.2015., Orašje - H.E. Kazuya OGAWA, ambassador of Japan in BiH, Mr. Nobumitsu KAMIO, the first secretary at the Japanese Embassy in BiH, Mr. Harry SMITH, IOM representative, Mr. Đuro TOPIĆ Mayor of Orašje and Mr. Marijan KLAIĆ, Prime Minister of Posavina Canton are going to officially open the newly constructed Centre in Orašje.
18 December - International migrants day
Worldwide candlelight vigil to remember lost migrant lives
LET YOUR LIGHT SHINE
This report was prepared within the framework of the project “Strengthening the Fight against Trafficking in Persons and Migrant Smuggling in the Western Balkans” Regional Project funded by the IOM Development Fund and the Government of Italy. The opinions expressed in the report are those of the authors and do not necessarily re!ect the views of the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
Representatives of Japanese government, IOM and Srbac municipality - officially opening Centre for disabled children in Srbac
Satoru Kusayama, Japanese Government in BiH, Radmila Urošević, IOM and Drago Ćirić, Major of Srbac Municipality, on 09.10.2015. at 11:00, officially opened Centre for disabled children which was severely damaged in devastating floods in 2014.