OHR Reconstruction and Return, March 1998

RRTF: Report March 1998

An Action Plan in support of the return of refugees and displaced persons in Bosnia and Herzegovina

March 1998


  1. In conclusion, the main principles of this report should be summarized:
    • Political support is key for movements to take place, and financial assistance is crucial in making them sustainable – but financial assistance alone cannot make large returns happen.
    • Population movements cannot be predicted well, and a demand-driven approach which accompanies or follows actual movements may be the best option for ensuring optimal use of donor resources.
    • Scarce resources should be primarily targeted towards sustainable movements – and returns to remote rural areas may not be possible in many cases.
    • Direct external financial assistance can only address a small fraction of the difficulties faced by returnees and displaced persons – and must be accompanied by significant institutional reforms in order to be effective.
    • The ultimate responsibility for successful reintegration rests with Bosnia and Herzegovina’s authorities – and they should be both encouraged to take all necessary steps, and closely associated with donor activities.
    • There is a place for proactive interventions but they require particularly careful identification and close coordination.
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Office of the High Representative
Reconstruction and Return Task Force