• Text size Normal size text | Increase text size by 10% | Increase text size by 20% | Increase text size by 30%

Housing repair project in former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Briefing Notes, 24 September 2002

This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Kris Janowski to whom quoted text may be attributed at the press briefing, on 24 September 2002, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

UNHCR will hand over its housing repair effort in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to the European Commission by the end of this year as part of a plan to gradually phase out UNHCR's operations in the Balkans. Since August of last year, UNHCR has overseen the repair of 85 percent of some 7,000 houses damaged during last year's fighting, allowing tens of thousands of people uprooted by the conflict in FYROM to return to their homes.

The 32 million Euro shelter project is seen as a vital element of the international effort to bring peace and stability to FYROM and reconcile communities divided by the conflict. The housing project covered homes of virtually all of the country's ethnic groups: Albanians, Macedonian Slavs, Serbs and Roma. Under an agreement reached with the European Union last year, UNHCR was supposed to supervise the most urgent repairs of houses that suffered light to moderate damage, while the European Commission would oversee the effort rebuild heavily damaged homes.



The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: Refugees Onward JourneyPlay video

The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: Refugees Onward Journey

A transit centre at Vinojug, on FYR Macedonia's border with Greece is where the refugees and migrants pass through on their journey further into Europe. Here UNHCR and partner organisations provide food, water, medical care, psycho-social support and information for refugees who take the train towards the border with Serbia. UNHCR also provides information on how to access the asylum system in the country. In recent weeks, an average of 6,300 refugees pass through the camp every day, yesterday that number grew to 10,000, a record.
FYR Macedonia: Volunteers At HandPlay video

FYR Macedonia: Volunteers At Hand

Almost 300,000 refugees and migrants have passed through the Gevgelija transit center in the former Yusgoslav Republic of Macedonia, on their way to the EU since it was setup less than two months ago.
Serbia: Overstretched BordersPlay video

Serbia: Overstretched Borders

As Hungary builds a fence on its border with Serbia, the situation at the border between the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Greece is increasingly precarious. Refugees in Serbia on their way to Hungry fear the tighter measures and say they wouldn't have fled home had they not been forced to do it by the war.