Serbia hosts around 4,200 refugees and migrants who arrived during the European Refugee Situation. Additionally, there are over 26,500 refugees and 199,500 IDPs from the ex- Yugoslavia region, and some 2,100 persons at risk of statelessness.
Persons in need of international protection amongst newly arriving third country nationals (over 17,200 during the last twelve months) are supported in requesting and being granted asylum and local integration. Most displaced from the region have found solutions, while cases and threat of statelessness have been reduced.
UNHCR continues to support the Government in strengthening the national asylum system and in achieving sustainable developmental and institutional protection and solutions interventions.
Working with Partners
UNHCR Serbia enjoys close collaboration with the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, of Labour, Employment, Veteran, and Social Affairs, of Internal Affairs, of Public Administration and Local SelfGovernment, of Health, with the Serbian Commissariat for Refugees and Migration (SCRM) as well as with local authorities.
Project Partnership agreements have been concluded with A11, Amity, Belgrade Center for Human Rights (BCHR), Crisis Response and Policy Center (CRPC), Danish Refugee Council (DRC), Humanitarian Center for Integration and Tolerance (HCIT), IDEAS, Indigo – Group for Children and Youth, International Aid Network (IAN), Praxis, Psychosocial Innovation Network (PIN), Sigma Plus and UNDP.
UNHCR Serbia, together IOM, co-chairs the Refugee and Migration Theme Group of the UN Country Team, and is pro-actively engaged with development partners in UNDAF, Agenda 2030/SDG, GCR/GFR, European integration, and other inter-agency work.
UNHCR supports the Government of Serbia in strengthening the national asylum system in line with applicable international standards and its EU accession schedule.
2015-2016, UNHCR and partners supported Serbia in addressing the protection and humanitarian needs of over one million refugees, mostly from Syria, who entered the country during the European refugee crisis. After the lifting of the emergency situation at end 2016, humanitarian interventions were gradually handed-over to other stakeholders.
Current activities of UNHCR and partners strengthen the national asylum and solutions system, including protection-sensitive migration management. These activities include assistance to accessing asylum procedures and public services, protection monitoring in some 25 sites across the country, child protection as well as SGBV prevention and response interventions. Through CBI, education and employment support, UNHCR and partners also promote a sustainable integration of recognised refugees,
UNHCR Serbia works closely with authorities and civil society in creating systemic solutions to Roma lacking birth registration and personal documentation and other actions of the global #IBelong Campaign to end Statelessness.
Operationalizing the Global Compact for Refugees, UNHCR Serbia works closely with the Government, the UNCT, development partners, IFIs and other stakeholders to secure the inclusion and improvement of the situation of persons of concern in the nationalisation of Sustainable Development Goals, the UN Development Assistance Framework for Serbia and other developmental processes.
UNHCR Serbia enjoys effective regular cross-border cooperation with UNHCR teams in neighbouring countries, including Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, North Macedonia,
Hungary, Montenegro and Romania.
■ UNHCR provides legal aid and advocates for solutions for persons displaced within the region and, together with the OSCE, monitors beneficiary selection of the Regional Refugee Housing Programme (RHP).