Training for judges on the extrajudicial procedure to determine the time and place of birth was organized today by the Centre for Judicial and Prosecutorial Training of FBiH, UN Refugee Agency – UNHCR and Association “Vasa prava BiH”, with support from the Government of the Kingdom of Denmark, with the objective to prevent statelessness and facilitate the exercise of fundamental human rights by means of efficient registration in the official birth registries.
“By organizing this training for municipal court judges in BiH, we are continuing our long-standing practice of supporting institutions in their casework concerning the matter of statelessness and status of persons at risk of statelessness. Today we will specifically discuss real-life cases of persons whose status remains unresolved for a number of years”, said Emir Prcanovic, Executive Director at the Association “Vaša Prava BiH”.
Hugues Bissot, Head of Protection at UNHCR in BiH, noted that effective resolution of unresolved cases contributes to the fulfilment of pledges that Bosnia and Herzegovina made at the High-Level Segment on Statelessness concerning improved registration of births through improved regulations and practice.
“We hope that today’s event will contribute to efficient resolution of the few cases known to UNHCR that remain unresolved in Bosnia and Herzegovina and that BiH will manage to attain this ambitious but attainable goal of resolving all known cases of statelessness, thus becoming one of the first countries in the world to have done so”, concluded Bissot.
This training event was organised on account of the adoption of the Law on Amendments to the Law on Extrajudicial Procedure of the Federation BiH, which prescribes a special new procedure for determining the time and place of birth and should help persons at risk of statelessness who are unable to provide evidence of birth, required under the regulations governing registration in official registries, to become registered in the official birth registries – thus reducing the risk of statelessness.
“The Centre for Judicial and Prosecutorial Training of FBiH organizes trainings for judges who handle extrajudicial procedures each year. Considering that the Law on Extrajudicial Procedure was amended this year, together with our colleagues from the Association “Vasa prava BiH” we decided to organize this training on the topic of determining the time and place of birth, in order to familiarize the judges with this matter and shed light on common issues that arise in practice”, said Davor Trlin, Expert Advisor at Centre for Judicial and Prosecutorial Training of FBiH.
The relatively low number of persons at risk of statelessness as a very small number of stateless persons today is a direct result of the joint efforts of the competent authorities and the coordinated work of UNHCR in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Association “Vaša prava BiH” since 2009.However, additional efforts are required to fulfil Bosnia and Herzegovina’s pledge to improve legislation and practice related to registration in birth registries and ensure that every child is registered and has citizenship, and to eliminate statelessness by the end of 2024.