MARRI Bulletin, June 2019

Dear MARRI partners, supporters and friends,

This year, we are proud to mark the 15th anniversary of MARRI as a catalyst for regional cooperation on issues concerning migration, asylum and refugees in the Western Balkans. Back in 2004, MARRI was established with a decision by the Stability Pact of South-Eastern Europe. It has since evolved from a donor-supported organisation to a regional initiative jointly owned by its Participants.

Looking back, I am amazed by the hard work done and the progress made during this challenging but rewarding period. In 2008, the Participants took over the full ownership and leadership of MARRI, while securing its sustainability by funding the running costs for its Secretariat – the MARRI Regional Centre.

Initially, MARRI has been established by Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, (North) Macedonia, and Serbia and Montenegro. Over the years, its composition has changed with the leaving of Croatia and joining of Kosovo* as a full-fledged MARRI Participant. Nevertheless, the commitment towards regional cooperation and a coordinated response to the common challenges has stood the test of time.

MARRI Bulletin 2

MARRI RC Director interview for Ina Online, North Macedonia

“Far more economic migrants pass through the Western Balkans than refugees from the war zones” said MARRI RC Director Sashko Kocev in the interview for Ina Online.

MARRI Bulletin, January 2019

Dear MARRI friends,

Five months have passed since I took over the position of Director of the MARRI Regional Centre. It is a milestone in my professional life. After more than 29 years with the Macedonian Ministry of Interior, it is the first time that I engage with a different institution – although closely related to the MOI’s tasks in migration management.

I am aware of the challenge I am faced with but at the same time, I am convinced that my extensive experience in Police and border management, as well as the practical knowledge and expertise in implementing numerous EU/IPA funded projects, will greatly benefit our work at MARRI.

MARRI Bulletin 1

MARRI RC Director interview for Plusinfo, Macedonia

“The situation in the region has been significantly improved in terms of capacities and resources to tackle a large influx of migrants but challenges still persist,..” said MARRI RC Director Sashko Kocev in the interview for Plusinfo, Macedonia.


Završen MARRI Regionalni forum, Crna Gora završila jednogodišnje predsjedavanje inicijativom

Završen MARRI Regionalni forum, Crna Gora završila jednogodišnje predsjedavanje inicijativomGodišnji Forum Regionalne inicijative za migracije, azil i izbjegla lica (MARRI) održan je juče u Podgorici, čime je zaokruženo jednogodišnje predsjedavanje Crne Gore ovim regionalnim mehanizmom. Forumom je predsjedavao ambasador Milorad Šćepanović, generalni direktor za multilateralne poslove u MVPEI, a učestvovali su predstavnici Albanije, Makedonije, Bosne i Hercegovine, Srbije, Crne Gore i Kosova, kao i predstavnici brojnih međunarodnih organizacija: Međunarodne organizacije za migracije (IOM), OEBS-a, DCAF-a, ICMPD-a i Švajcarskog državnog sekretarijata za migracije.

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Ministar vanjskih poslova Bosne i Hercegovine Igor Crnadak u Skoplju razgovarao sa direktoricom Regionalnog centra MARRI Tamarom Mugoša

Ministar vanjskih poslova Bosne i Hercegovine Igor Crnadak razgovarao je 6. juna 2016. godine u Skoplju sa direktoricom Regionalnog centra MARRI (Regionalna inicijativa o migracijama, azilu i povratku izbjeglica – Migration Asylum Refugees Regional Initiative) Tamarom Mugoša.

Tokom susreta je razgovarano o aktivnostima koje provodi MARRI, saradnji BiH i MARRI-a, posebno o aktuelnoj migrantskoj krizi i cijelom nizu specifičnih tema za oblast migracija i azila.

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Спасовски: Од еден милион бегалци во Европа, 620.000 минале низ Македонија

ceiХуманиот пристап кон луѓето што бегаат од војни мора да биде наш императив, но, истовремено, не може да постои компромис кога е во прашање безбедноста на граѓаните и на земјата, истакнал министерот за внатрешни работи, Оливер Спасовски, на отворањето на меѓународната конференција на тема „Миграции и прилив на бегалци во транзитните земји: безбедносни импликации“ што во организација на Институтот за геостратешки истражувања и за надворешна политика при Министерството за надворешни работи, како актуелен претседавач со Централноевропската иницијатива (ЦЕИ), се одржува денеска и утре во Скопје.

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III Godišnji sastanak BORDAIRPOL-a



Treći godišnji sastanak koji je okupio šefove graničnih policija i komandire međunarodnih aerodroma zemalja JIE, a u okviru Crnogorskog predsjedavanja Regionalnom inicijativom za migracije, azil i raseljena lica (MARRI), održan je danas u Budvi. Otvarajući skup generalni direktor Direktorata za međunarodnu saradju i evropske integracije Ivan Ivanišević pozdravio je dosadašnje napore ove inicijative, te istu prepoznao kao značajan mehanizam za pružanje zajedničkog odgovora na aktuelne bezbjednosne izazove i prijetnje sa kojim se suočava evropski kontinent.

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MARRI RC Director interview for Wall Street International


At a time when hundreds of thousands of refugees are fleeing war-torn Syria to seek a better life elsewhere, masses of people are flooding borders to reach Europe. This creates challenges for the countries along the way that are providing food, temporary shelter, and meeting basic needs. As these migrants pass through the Balkans with a determination to reach Germany, Austria and Scandinavian countries, cooperation between Balkan leaders has become an essential element in continuing regional stability. Unity among Balkan states, as well as a consensus in regard to strategic matters of security, is a key factor in garnering favor with the European Union – something that the Western Balkans are actively seeking.

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Migration and refugees: Collective efforts for joint regional response

Migration, Asylum and Refugees Regional Initiative (MARRI) was established in 2004. It is a unique mechanism dealing with these three areas in the Region. Our motto is to act as advocate and be catalyst of the Western Balkans Six interests and responses to the challenges related to our field of competence.

Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and Kosovo are Participants of the Initiative. It has Forum of Interior Ministers, committee where foreign ministries are represented with their high officials (mostly Deputy Foreign Ministers for multilateral and regional affairs) and Network of National Coordinators. MARRI has Regional Centre seated in Skopje, where Participants are represented by MARRI Officials – specialists for fields of competence selected by the most experienced public servants employed at interior or foreign ministries. Director of MARRI RC is selected at the competition announced every three years. His/her crucial role is to manage RC and act as Executive Secretary of the Forum and Committee Coordinator.

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