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.

 

Latest News and Events

  • IOM organized the ninth regular coordination meeting of the directors of Border Police agencies from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia and Kosovo*

     

    These regular gatherings serve to exchange information on migration trends and routes as well as main changes in smugglers’ modus operandi. Having in mind that in summer usually the number of arrivals increase, representatives of the Western Balkan countries working on risk analysis and contingency planning have also been included in the discussion.

     

     

  • Regional program “Enhancing Capacities and Mechanisms to Identify and Protect Vulnerable Migrants in the Western Balkans”

     

    The meeting gathered key representatives working on migration management and protection of vulnerable migrants from six countries of the Western Balkans. These meetings provide a platform for the countries of the region to regularly share information on the migrant situation, to exchange good practices and seek common solutions to similar problems. “We need to work together to establish a common approach to solve these issues” said one of the participants.

     

  • Regional Meeting on Readmission in the Western Balkans

     

    While readmission in the Western Balkans is a broad topic that touches upon many aspects of migration management, the discussions at this regional meeting will focus on three key areas, namely: readmission practices, figures and challenges in the Western Balkans (presented by WB Readmission Officers)

     

  • European Union donated a new ambulance to Health Centre Bihać

     

    “From the very beginning of the migration crisis, the Health Centre Bihac was involved in the primary health care of the migrants, and at no time did we neglect the health care of the local population. Since this new situation largely surpassed pur capacities, we contacted the Ministry of Health, as well as at the International Organization for Migration, and emphasized our real needs for functioning on the field. With the full support of the City Administration and the Ministry of Health, the International Organization for Migration has implemented a project for the purchase of a medical vehicle for the Health centre Bihac, donated by the European Union. Today, perhaps symbolically, exactly one year after our first field visit and providing assistance to a migrant, the International Organization for Migration handed over the keys of the ambulance. This is a significant donation for the Health Centre Bihać and will enable us to provide faster and better quality health care to both the local population and migrants. We are grateful for this donation and we are looking forward to good cooperation on future projects”, said Ms. Ljubijankić.

     

  • JAVNI POZIV za dostavljanje prijedloga za dodjelu priznanja iseljenicima i organizacijama iseljenika iz Bosne i Hercegovine

     

    Poziva se iseljeništvo iz Bosne i Hercegovine, organizacije iseljenika iz Bosne i Hercegovine, privredna društva, nevladine organizacije, udruženja i drugi pravni subjekti iz iseljeništva i Bosne i Hercegovine da dostave prijedloge za dodjelu priznanja iz oblasti:

    a) privrede,

    b) nauke i obrazovanja,

    c) kulture i informiranja,

    d) profesionalnog i amaterskog sporta,

    e) zdravstva i socijalne zaštite,

    f) filantropskih i dobrotvornih aktivnosti.

    Iz svake oblasti dodjeljuje se jedno priznanje, bez obzira na to da li se priznanje dodjeljuje pojedincu ili organizaciji iseljenika iz Bosne i Hercegovine.

     

Latest Vacancy

IOM Sarajevo launches report funded by the IOM Development Fund

Today in Sarajevo, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) launched the report, ‘Mapping Major Migration Flows Over the Territory of Western Balkan Countries, 2009-2013'. This report was produced by IOM with the aim of supporting Western Balkan governments in formulating adequate policies to enhance the management of increasing mixed migration flows from, through and to the Western Balkans region. The report presents findings based on a mapping of the main regular and irregular migration flows through the territory of the Western Balkans in the period 2009-2013. The report presents migration to and from WB countries for the purposes of work, education and family reunification; irregular entry and stay of extra regional migrants; international protection; return of Western Balkan citizens under Readmission Agreements; and trafficking in human beings and smuggling of migrants in the region.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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#MigrationMeans

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.

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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”.

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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.

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