A new migration route to Europe emerged in 2018 via Montenegro or Serbia through Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) toward Croatia, as people avoided more heavily guarded routes. The number of people crossing at unofficial border points has significantly increased. Nationalities of the migrants are mainly Pakistani (34%), Iranian (16%), Syrian (12%) and Iraqi (9%).?

Over 25,530 migrants have passed through BiH since the beginning of 2018. An estimated 5,400 migrants are in BiH.?Most are living in reception centres in Una-Sana Canton in the northwest, where they attempt to cross the Croatian border into the EU. Tightened border control in Croatia since May 2018 has made crossing more difficult, prolonging their stay in BiH.?

As winter ends and weather conditions improve, arrival numbers will likely increase. A spike in new arrivals to BiH is expected in spring, potentially doubling the caseload.?

Humanitarian access: Access is affected by lack of coordination between regional authorities, and cooperation between local authorities and international and local humanitarian actors is strained. Insecurity due to unrest among migrants and tension with authorities is an additional constraint.?

INFORM measures BiH's risk of humanitarian crisis and disaster to be medium, at 3.7. Vulnerability is also measured at 3.7.?

Latest Developments

15/05: Strong winds and heavy rainfall between 12 to 13 May have resulted in a number of people being injured as well as damage to infrastructure. Five municipalities have declared a state of emergency (Bosanska Krupa, Sanski Most, Banovici, Tesanj and Teslic). Hundreds of houses have been flooded, schools closed and electricity and water supplies have been disrupted. The rainfall has caused landslides and some roads are blocked in central part of the country. Moderate rainfall is forecast for the next 24 hours.?

Key figures

  • 5,400 Migrants and refugees in the country  [?]
  • 19,501 Attestations on intention to seek asylum  [?]
  • 1,312 Asylum applications  [?]

Key priorities

Shelter: Accommodation as well as warm clothing, tents, sleeping bags, and blankets.?

Protection: Croatian police have pushed migrants back to BiH, in some cases violently, without giving them the possibility to seek asylum.?

Health: Migrants cannot access public healthcare unless they register an intention to seek asylum. Exposure to the elements and crowded living conditions increase the likelihood of health issues.?Many people have experienced traumatizing events and show signs of deteriorated mental health.?

Information Gaps and needs

Reliable, accurate figures of the numbers of migrants and their exact locations do not exist.