UNHCR’s Assistant High Commissioner for Protection, Gillian Triggs concluded a visit to Croatia today. Her visit focused on protection concerns, including access to territory and asylum, integration of refugees, national resettlement efforts and solutions for stateless people.
In Zagreb, the Assistant High Commissioner met with asylum seekers and refugees at the Zagreb reception center and spoke with them about their displacement experiences as well as their current situation and hopes for their future in Croatia.
As part of her visit, Triggs met with the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Mr. Gordan Grlić Radman and State Secretary Terezija Gras of the Ministry of the Interior. The discussions centered on challenges to access to territory and asylum while acknowledging the government’s achievements in providing resettlement and integration opportunities for refugees.
“We understand the pressure that front-line states such as Croatia face in light of the large numbers of persons in mixed movements who are seeking to enter irregularly. At the same time it is important that those who may be in need of international protection are able to access the asylum procedure in order to have their claims considered,” said Triggs. UNHCR commends Croatia for establishing the Independent National Monitoring Mechanism and stands ready to support the government with its work.
Triggs also visited IKEA’s Zagreb Store which is spearheading an initiative to provide work and training opportunities for refugees and hailed this as an outstanding way to promote refugee integration.
“IKEA’s partnership with UNHCR to enable work experience and training for refugees is an inspiring example of how the private sector can play a positive role in welcoming and supporting refugees,” said Gillian Triggs.
The Assistant High Commissioner also visited the towns of Petrinja and Sisak whose local communities were heavily affected by the earthquake in December 2020. Among those impacted were also resettled refugees, stateless people and beneficiaries of the Regional Housing Programme. Triggs conveyed appreciation for host communities in Croatia that show hospitality and generosity despite their own hardship.
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UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, protects people forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution. We work in over 130 countries, protecting millions of people by responding with life-saving support, safeguarding fundamental human rights and helping them build a better future. http://unhcr.org
UNHCR has been operating in Croatia since 1991, and supports the government in protection of refugees, asylum seekers, stateless and people at risk of statelessness, as well as the beneficiaries of the Regional Housing Programme.
For UNHCR Croatia Twitter Account please visit here.
For more information about the Regional Housing Programme please visit here.