Bosnia and Herzegovina

Country Facts

DRC present since:

1992

Staff on location:

87

Displaced population:

9,500

Displacement Situation 

The former state of Yugoslavia, which emerged in the aftermath of World War I, was made up of six federal republics: Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), Montenegro, and Macedonia. Following the death of long-term leader Josip Broz Tito in 1980, the country slipped into crisis; ethnic tensions and nationalist sentiments surged. War eventually broke out in 1991 and lasted until 2001. Bosnia and Herzegovina declared independence in 1992, and the war in BiH lasted until late 1995. 

Today, Bosnia and Herzegovina sits along one of the most travelled mixed migration routes in the Western Balkans. Transit corridors from Bulgaria, North Macedonia, and Serbia, as well as Albania and Montenegro all merge in Bosnia and Herzegovina. BiH authorities have detected more than 60,032 arrivals to the country since mid-2018. 

DRC Response 

DRC first arrived in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992, working in the country for 18 years until eventually winding down operations and handing over their responsibilities to domestic authorities and local NGOs in 2010. This was one of DRC’s first international operations, and served to significantly raise DRC’s profile as an international humanitarian response organisation 

DRC decided to return to Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2018, aiming to support the BiH authorities in managing the increased migration flows and corresponding challenges in the country. To that end, DRC’s work in BiH today focuses on several points:  

  • Improving access to healthcare (including psychosocial and mental health services) for refugees, migrants and asylum seekers 
  • Enhancing the overall protective environment, with a focus on supporting survivors of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) 
  • Providing immediate humanitarian assistance to migrants without access to formal reception facilities 
  • Ensuring a timely outreach protection response to human rights violations in border areas 

Contact

Claus Larsen

Regional Director

[email protected]

Nicola Bay

Country Director

[email protected]