New vehicles delivered today to the Una Sana Canton Ministry of Interior are part of overall support from the European Union to strengthen migration capacities in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The European Union has been directly supporting the Police and Ministry of Interior of Una Sana Caton and the City of Bihac with the reconstruction of migration camps, street lighting, police equipment, mini vans, furgon vehicles, rafting boats and ambulance vehicles, thus providing employment for 370 locals.
“Migration is not only an issue in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is a concern for the whole of Europe and an answer has to be found to manage migration flows in the best way possible. Let us not forget that migrants and refugees leave their country in search of a better future. They must be treated in a humanitarian manner and with respect to international standards in this regard. I count on all BiH authorities to find acceptable solutions for the upcoming winter and then find sustainable solutions for the longer term,” remarked Ambassador Johann Sattler, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Bosnia and Herzegovina and the EU Special Representative to BiH. The new vehicles are to be used to strengthen the work of police officers in the Canton as well as to increase their responsiveness and mobility.
During his first official visit to Bihać, Ambassador Sattler met with representatives of cantonal authorities in order to discuss the current situation in the region and the future steps to be undertaken both by the local authorities and the international community in addressing the migration situation.
“I would like to thank the European Union, which has remained our partner and did not leave this Canton alone to deal with the migrant situation. I thank you for this donation that is directly related to the work of our police officers and other engaged services. We are happy to have had the opportunity to introduce Ambassador Sattler to the existing situation and to be able to reach some conclusions today. Although we have not established internal coordination when it comes to resolving the migrant situation the European Union has been supporting us,” noted Mustafa Ružnić, Prime Minister of Una Sana Canton.
Šuhret Fazlić, the Mayor of Bihać stressed that the meetings are one of the activities that the local governments are using to highlight the urgency of the current situation, adding that “We have used this visit to thank the European Union for their support and not leaving us alone to deal with the migrant situation that we have witnessed through previous, current and future engagements in Una Sana Canton.”
Ambassador Sattler visited the Borići and Bira reception centers, which have been made operational to provide shelter, food, water, sanitation, clothes, physiological assistance and access to education and health. Since 2018, the European Union has allocated 36 million euros to addressing migration issues in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which has provided equipment and professional assistance to the USC Police, the Service for Foreigners’ Affairs, the BiH Border Police and the Sector for Asylum, in addition to allowing for the setting up of five temporary reception centers and providing basic services and protection.