The Serbian Experience

According to the UNHCR data, refugees in the Ex Yugoslav region counted more than 3,5 million people, either internally displaced or those who were forced to leave their country because of the war. War in Bosnia and Herzegovina resulted in more than 2 million refugees or internally displaced which, is almost half of the total population of this country.

Many people fleeing from the war found their shelter in another Yugoslav republic, but there was also significant number of people who found their shelter in some of the countries of Europe, USA or Australia. During the conflicts, more than a hundreds of thousands people came to Serbia – from Croatia after operation Storm (Oluja) more than 200000, while more than 20000 citizens of Croatian nationality were exiled from Serbia (Vojvodina), although there were no conflicts on Serbian territory.

Twenty five years after the conflict, some of the countries that were created after the breakup of Yugoslavia have an EU citizenship, while others are on their way to obtain it. Some of the refugee camps, created during the nineties are still active in the regions of Serbia, Kosovo and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Status of those who live in refugee camps or in collective centers is still unsure and undefined.

Today, Serbia is one of the main transit countries for migrants from the Middle East and it is in the heart of the so called Balkan route. Serbia is temporary home for thousands people from Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq who are trying to reach some of the EU countries.