The return of a group of citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) from Syria was due last Saturday. It was then suddenly announced that the deportation was being delayed until further notice.
No progress has been made to date. Oslobodenje news portal contacted BiH’s security minister, Dragan Mektic, who told them that there was still no new information on when deportation could occur.
In that first group of BiH citizens who are to come from Syria are women and children. In addition to 24 of them, nine men will be deported to BiH. Minister Mektic confirmed that the men would be deprived of their liberty upon arrival and that the police agencies have the correct names on these persons.
Whether BiH has the mechanisms and capacities to accept its citizens and whether we as a country are prepared to tackle this problem in the long run are the questions that have arisen. The security expert reporters from Oslobodenje spoke with said that BiH is not the most willing to accept these vulnerable groups.
“I doubt that we will be able to answer this task in a quality way. No programs have been put in place for the re-socialization of persons who were involved in foreign fronts. Only now are some programs being launched that should be implemented in prisons, ” said Denis Hadzovic, secretary general of the Center for Security Studies.
Chairman of BiH’s Council of Ministers Denis Zvizdic said that it is the duty of BiH, as well as of other countries of the world, to take over their citizens “for which we have proof that they are BiH citizens.”
“We have facilities provided for the accommodation of women and children. As for the men, they will be treated in accordance with the current law, which prohibits or punishes going to foreign battlefields and participating in foreign military formations,” Zvizdic explained.
In that regard, he added, we will be ready for acceptance, but “the most serious task comes after that, which is a matter of some kind of deradicalization and socialization of persons returning from the battlefield to BiH”.
The BiH Ministry of Security is in constant contact and continues to cooperate with international partners in order to transport BiH citizens from Syria when favorable conditions are met.