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Bosnia and Herzegovina : UNHCR, OSCE welcome decision to form Co-ordination Team to monitor implementation of refugees and displaced persons rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Regional Representation for South-Eastern Europe (UNHCR) in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Mission to BiH welcome the decision of the BiH Council of Ministers to form a Co-ordination Team to follow the implementation of rights of refugees and displaced persons under Annex VII of the Dayton Peace Accords.

The Co-ordination Team will consist of the Ministers for Human Rights and Refugees, Civil Affairs, Security, Finances and Treasury, and Foreign Affairs. Follow-up on the implementation of rights under Annex VII will include actions as set out in the Revised Strategy for the Implementation of Annex VII.

The UNHCR Regional Representation for South-Eastern Europe and the OSCE Mission to BiH will be represented in the Co-ordination Team as observers.

Susin Park, Acting UNHCR Regional Representative for South-Eastern Europe, , expressed the hope that the Team would be able to ensure the resolution of remaining issues under Annex VII, help secure more government resources to address the remaining needs, and promote further engagement of the local authorities to ensure that the identified solutions are sustainable.

It is now crucial to undertake a concerted joint effort to effectively complete the chapter of displacement in BiH, said Park. For this, it is of paramount importance that the Ministerial Co-ordination Team, together with the authorities, civil society and partners at all levels develop joint action plans to address agreed priority problems. In view of limited resources, all efforts should be focused on ensuring that the most vulnerable displaced people are identified and targeted for support. They should be put on track for a solution by mid-2017.

Fermin Cordoba, Director of the Human Dimension Department of the OSCE Mission to BiH, said: The appointment of the Co-ordination Team at the ministerial level will mean a great boost for the process of the completion of Annex VII, and it will set up clear guidance for the institutions at different levels to implement the long standing issues which will allow returnees and displaced persons to have access to human rights in equal conditions.

The decision to form the Co-ordination Team was published in the BiH Official Gazette on 6 September 2016, following its adoption in the Council of Ministers on 21July 2016.

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Publication:Mena Report
Geographic Code:4E0EE
Date:Sep 19, 2016
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