Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Taking Refuge

I've been looking at B92 most mornings for news of the region. Everyone is talking about EU accession and the announcement, which is expected on Friday, that Serbia is now officially a candidate for membership, with talks to begin on a date certain, the sooner the better.

It turns out that last Thursday was world refugee day, which afforded a chance to reflect on the 260,000 refugees in Serbia, a vestige of the war, now two decades past. My housekeeper, who is from Mostar, in Bosnia, is one of these, although she expressed no interest in returning home. In fact, she would rather join her daughters in Chicago.

Turns out she is not alone. The article goes on to state that only 5% of those displaced want to return to their homes. This seemed odd, but it seems that the mere act of fleeing, as well as the fear of persecution or reprisal on return is part of the status determination, and I guess there might still be some of that around, especially in Kosovo.

Still, she seems to be doing pretty well, although it's very easy for me to make that kind of a conclusion, and it might be completely unwarranted. It's hard to tell.

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