Serbia: Inter-Agency Operational Update (July-September 2018)
2,505 Registered intentions to seek asylum in Serbia
28% of registered refugees and migrants were minors
102 Applications for asylum
2 Persons granted refugee status
5 Persons granted subsidiary protection
UNHCR and partners observed/assisted 6,591 newly arriving refugees/migrants/asylum-seekers. Sixty-five percent irregularly arrived from fYRo Macedonia, 18% from Bulgaria, 13% by air and 4% from other directions. 32% claimed to be nationals of Pakistan, 30% of Afghanistan, 14% of Iran, 5% of Iraq, 4% of Bangladesh, 2% of Syria and 13% of other countries.
Seventy-four percent were men, 5% women and 21% children. This again constitutes a high increase of new arrivals, as during the second quarter of 2018, UNHCR and partners observed only 3,165 new arrivals, of which 77% had arrived from fYRo Macedonia, 10% from Bulgaria, 9% by air, etc. During the second quarter, 24% of all new arrivals were women and children (incl. families), and 44% claimed to originate in Pakistan, 21% in Afghanistan, 12% in Iraq, 10% in Iran and 3% in Syria, etc.
This trimester was characterized by almost fivefold increase in UASC arrivals compared to the previous three months, with as many as 1,032 observed UASC arrivals, raising even stronger concerns about appropriate accommodation and guardianship arrangements.
On 2 July, Humanitarian Center for Integration and Tolerance (HCIT) and Crisis Response and Policy Centre (CRPC) presented their joint publication “Between Closed Borders” in Media Centre in Belgrade.
Since the start of the new academic year on 3 September, local and central authorities successfully enrolled refugee/migrant children into a second year of public schooling. Consolidated efforts also resulted in greatly increased enrolment in public pre-schools and institutions of secondary education. According to the Serbian Commissariat for Refugees and Migration (SCRM) and UNICEF, a total of 420 children are enrolled in 2018/2019 formal preschool, primary and secondary education, of whom 211 are newly enrolled (40 new ones in preschool and 171 in primary and secondary school), in over 60 national (pre-)schools throughout the country. Authorities increasingly provided school transportation, if needed, and Serbian language lessons in partnership with UNICEF, while UNHCR and partners added additional language and catch-up classes.
On 1 August, the bodies of two young foreign men were found dead in a village near Ruma, northwest of Belgrade. According to the Ministry of Interior, they bore gunshot wounds, but no further details were available.
According to other, unofficial sources, the victims were young Afghan men, one registered as resident of Obrenovac Centre, and the perpetrator(s) also Afghan national(s), involved in smuggling.