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

  • 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.

     

  • “Trafficking in Human Beings and Migrant Smuggling in Mixed Migration Flows”

     

    The seminar “Trafficking in Human Beings and Migrant Smuggling in Mixed Migration Flows” was organized by IOM in collaboration with the Centers for Education of Judges and Prosecutors of the FBiH and RS and OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina, on 17-18 April.

     

  • Activities initiated by young students from Prijedor

     

    This is important for the young because they have enriched social content in this way, but also it will affect the elderly in Prijedor as they will now have a place to spend their time and hang out with their friends. After the official opening, a chess tournament followed where young people measured their strengths. The winner of the tournament received a small chess award for the first place.

     

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Second Community Dialogue was held in Bužim

Second Community Dialogue, an activity within the project "Community Based Approach to Support Youth in Targeted Municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina", was held in Bužim. The youth from the local communities Lubarda, Vrhovska and Čava pointed the problems they are facing – the lack of space for their activities, passivity, lack of interest from local leaders and managing structures for solving problems

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Launch of "Little kindergarten" presented to the residents of local communities Gornji Rahic and Maoca and to the selected commission

Launch of "Little kindergarten" – workshop for pupils and children of preschool age, the first activity within the project "Community Based Approach to Support Youth in Targeted Municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina" was presented to the residents of local communities Gornji Rahic and Maoca and to the selected commission. 

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Second Community Dialogue was held with youth from Gradisce, Smajici and several other local communities in Zenica

Second Community Dialogue, an activity within the project "Community Based Approach to Support Youth in Targeted Municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina" was held with youth from Gradisce, Smajici and several other local communities in Zenica. With the support of IOM's local coordinators, they presented two projects to be implemented in Gradisce, and one for the local community of Smajici.

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UN Migration Agency Marks 11th EU Anti-Trafficking Day with New Data, Analysis on Human Trafficking

Counter-Trafficking Work

IOM has been working to counter trafficking in persons since 1994. In this time, we have assisted over 90,000 trafficked persons. Ensuring freedom and a chance at a new life, IOM’s assistance can include accommodation in places of safety, medical and psychosocial support, skills development and vocational training, reintegration assistance, and the options of voluntary, safe and dignified return to countries of origin, integration in the country of destination, or resettlement to third countries when needed.

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Second Community Dialogue was held with youth in Urije, and several other local communities in Prijedor

Second Community Dialogue, an activity within the project "Community Based Approach to Support Youth in Targeted Municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina", was held with youth in Urije, and several other local communities in Prijedor. With the support of IOM’s local coordinators, the youth identified the problems in their communities, and ways for those to be solved - and they suggested projects related to sports and ecology.These activities implemented by IOM are supported by the USAID Bosnia and Herzegovina, British Embassy Sarajevo and the Embassy of the Republic of Italy in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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FINAL REPORT OF THE CONFERENCE - Sub-regional consultative event in the Western Balkans on the Global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration (Sarajevo, 29 June 2017)

The sub-regional consultative event on the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) in the Western Balkans, held in Sarajevo on 29 June 2017, built up on a series of six national informational events that presented the respective Global Compacts for Migration and for Refugees. The national events were facilitated by IOM and UNHCR, in close cooperation with the Governments in the region and other relevant stakeholders. 

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10th Symposium of Prosecutors of Bosnia and Herzegovina

The IOM BiH was participant and co-organizer of the Panel 3, as the part of the 10th Symposium of Prosecutors of Bosnia and Herzegovina where Peter Van der Auweaert, IOM Subregional Coordinator for the Western Balkans spoke on Cultural sensitive care of victims of trafficking and what IOM learned from the Western Balkans migration crisis when it comes to human trafficking.

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