Bosnia and Herzegovina

Latest Bosnia and Herzegovina Fact Sheet


Key Developments

Heavy rains beginning in early May 2014 caused widespread flooding across northeastern and central Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), particularly in the Sarajevo, Tuzla, and Zenica-Doboj cantons; Zvornik town in Republika Srpska; and Brcko District. An initial assessment found that floods had displaced thousands of households, disrupted water supplies, and damaged public infrastructure, including roads and bridges. The floods damaged the electricity supply to at least 5,000 households, limiting communication and access to the affected populations. Many flood-affected families—which included more than 6,000 people evacuated from Maglaj and Olovo towns, Zenica-Doboj—temporarily resided with friends and relatives. In response, municipal civil protection units, Red Cross Society of BiH volunteers, and firefighters assisted the affected populations. On May 15, the Government of BiH (GoBiH) declared a national disaster and requested international assistance to conduct relief activities.

On May 15, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires, a.i., Nicholas M. Hill declared a disaster due to the effects of the floods. In response, USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) provided $50,000 through USAID/BiH to the Red Cross Society of BiH to support the procurement and distribution of emergency relief commodities to flood-affected communities, including equipment to aid evacuation efforts.

A USAID/OFDA humanitarian assistance advisor arrived in country on May 18 to conduct assessments and support flood response coordination. On May 19, USAID/OFDA provided another $50,000 for the procurement of 13 additional boats to further aid relief efforts.

Background

BiH is often prone to flooding due to snowfall melt and seasonal rains. Since 2004, USAID/OFDA has responded to four disaster events—including floods and a winter emergency—in BiH.

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Last updated: May 21, 2014

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