UNHCR’s role and work in Montenegro

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is a global organization dedicated to saving lives, protecting rights and building a better future for refugees, forcibly displaced communities, and stateless people.

In Montenegro, the Government – Ministry of the Interior has the responsibility to register and process asylum claims and to decide whether somebody can be granted international protection in Montenegro. They are also responsible for the accommodation of asylum seekers and are providing support to refugees in their integration into Montenegrin society.

Therefore, UNHCR in Montenegro does not:

  • register asylum seekers,
  • examine asylum applications,
  • issue documents to asylum seekers and refugees
  • provide accommodation
  • receive nor process resettlement applications

On the other pages of this help page, you can find the relevant authority/organization that can assist you with the above requests.

UNHCR in Montenegro works with the Government and authorities, non-governmental and other organizations, and local communities to ensure that asylum seekers and refugees are protected and that they can exercise their legally stipulated rights.

The main activities of UNHCR in Montenegro include:

  • advocating for the improvement of policies and services that affect the lives of asylum seekers and refugees
  • supporting national and local authorities to implement the official asylum procedure and facilitate access to rights
  • informing asylum seekers and refugees about their rights and obligations, and assisting them with ineffective access to those rights
  • raising awareness of refugee issues and collaboration with NGOs, academic institutions, the media, and the private sector
  • providing legal counselling and psychosocial support to asylum seekers and refugees, through our partner organizations

UNHCR advocates for swift access to fair and efficient asylum procedures but cannot exert any influence on the proceedings which are conducted by the Montenegrin authorities.

What can UNHCR in Montenegro do for you?

UNHCR staff will listen to you and inform you of the options and procedures that are available to you to allow you to make informed decisions for yourself. Everything you say will be confidential.

UNHCR staff can give you clear and practical legal information, which includes:

  • what procedures do you have to complete upon arrival in Montenegro
  • how to apply for asylum
  • what assistance can you get as an asylum seeker
  • what assistance you can get if you get international protection in Montenegro
  • where to get help if you are at risk because of your gender, age or sexual orientation

UNHCR staff will explain to you specific procedures that may apply to the following forcibly displaced groups:

a) unaccompanied children
b) persons with a disability or persons suffering from an incurable or serious illness
c) elderly
d) pregnant women or women having recently given birth
e) single parents with minor children
f) survivors of torture, rape or other serious forms of psychological, physical or sexual violence or exploitation, or persons with a post-traumatic disorder
g) victims of trafficking
h) persons at risk of statelessness and stateless persons. 

UNHCR will also refer you to relevant organizations or an authority that might be able to provide you with the services or support necessary.