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Closure of refugee camps in Bosnia

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The Council of Europe, the United Nations (UN) and the European Union have called for a closure of the overcrowded refugee camp Vucjak in north-western Bosnia. The refugees who were accommodated there were to be taken to more suitable accommodation immediately, demanded representatives of the three organizations. The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatovic, spoke today of a „pathetic“ situation.

„The camp Vucjak should not have been opened and must now be closed,“ it said in a statement by Mijatovic. She was very worried because the authorities continued to bring people into the crowded warehouse. Already there is no running water and no electricity in the camp. The sanitary conditions are bad and would only worsen with the onset of winter. Mijatovic also pointed out that the camp was in a landmine-contaminated area.

The UN team for Bosnia and Herzegovina described the camp as „unsuitable for housing people“. The United Nations had already pointed to the shortcomings of the camp, which was built on a former landfill, in the summer. „There are still significant safety and health risks in Vucjak, the location is far from international humanitarian standards,“ the UN team said in its recent communication.