FM Alert, Vol II, No. 40

From: MINELRES moderator <>
Date: Wed, 14 Oct 1998 08:28:17 +0300 (EET DST)
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Subject: FM Alert, Vol II, No. 40

From: MINELRES moderator <>

Original sender: Paulette Layton <>

FM Alert, Vol II, No. 40

FM Alert, Vol II, No. 40
October 9, 1998
The Forced Migration Projects (FMP) will hold a meeting on October 14
to examine the impact of the current crisis in Russia on population
displacement. Several diplomats and experts are expected to attend the
meeting:  "Crisis in Russia: The Implications for Forced Migration."
Valery Tishkov, director of the Moscow-based Institute of Ethnology
and Anthropology at the Russian Academy of Sciences, and a former
Minister of Nationalities, will make a presentation at the meeting. 
The meeting will be held at the Open Society Institute offices in New
York and is co-sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations' Program
on Refugees and the Displaced. Participants will discuss potential
action that could soften the impact of economic and political turmoil
on refugees and displaced persons, not only in Russia, but throughout
the Commonwealth of Independent States. The FMP have urged a
rethinking of the follow up to the 1996 CIS Conference on
migration-related issues. A top priority should be to incorporate
international financial institutions, including the World Bank and
International Monetary Fund, into Program of Action implementation
(For background information see FM Alerts of June 12 and May 29).
The Commission for Real Property Claims (CRPC), an administrative body
created under the Dayton peace agreement, continues to expand its
operations despite an uncertain legal and policy context.  Due to the
large number of Bosnians currently living in third countries, the CRPC
now has four offices in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, as well as
two in Sweden, and one each in Denmark, Germany and Norway to assist
with restoration of property rights.  As of September 1998, the
commission has received 95,000 claims for 115,000 properties in Bosnia
and Hercegovina and issued 15,000 decisions; very few of which concern
occupancy rights in the Federation and none of which concern occupancy
rights in Republika Srpska.  Recent events have complicated the work
of the CRPC, especially in Republika Srpska. Bosnia-wide elections in
September brought a mix of nationalist and moderate parties into power
in the Serb entity.  Many of these officials remain cool to the type
of property law reform which would enable the beneficiaries of CRPC
decisions to assert their property rights.  In addition, Edhem
Bicakcic, the Federation Premier and a leading member of the ruling
nationalist Bosniak party, reacting to the recent decision by the
Office of the High Representative in Bosnia and Hercegovina to extend
the deadline for filing property claims for socially owned apartments,
asserted that the international community was overstepping its
authority.  Such ongoing property rights dilemmas were discussed at an
international conference in Zagreb, Croatia, in February 1998, where
FMP director Arthur C. Helton proposed the creation of a regional
mechanism to supervise and monitor the implementation of appropriate
property rights solutions across state boundaries. (For additional
information see FM Alerts of October 2, September 4, August 7 and
March 13).
Forced Migration Projects Director Arthur C. Helton will serve as a
co-director of a 1999 summer course at the Central European University
in Budapest that focuses on issues related to refugees and displaced
persons. The course:  Human Rights and Forced Displacement: An
Interdisciplinary Approach, will be held July 5-16, 1999. Professor
Boldizar Nagy, an associate professor at Eotvos Lorand University in
Hungary, will also serve as a course co-director. The course will
pursue an interdisciplinary approach in examining the phenomenon of
forced displacement in the post-Cold War era. It will place forced
migration within a geopolitical and socio-economic context, exploring
the societal frictions that cause population displacements. The course
will also examine possible approaches to the humane management of
forced migration including use of a human rights framework and
international institutions. The course is designed to appeal to
scholars and policy actors in Central and Eastern Europe and the
former Soviet Union. For an application contact Eva Gedeon at CEU/SUN
in Budapest at (36-1) 327-3069, <>.  Applications are
due in January.
For more information contact:

The Forced Migration Projects
400 West 59th Street, 4th floor
New York, NY 10019
tel: (212)548-0655
fax: (212) 548-4676

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