Montenegro – Needs and Intentions Surveys with Refugees from Ukraine, Round #02 (May 2022)
May 31 2022
From 24 February to 31 May, it is estimated that over 74,000 Ukrainians entered the Western Balkans (WB) following the outbreak of the armed conflict in Ukraine. In the same period, nearly 23,000 Ukrainians entered Montenegro, of which nearly 15,000 left the country.
As of 29 May, about 7,700 Ukrainians who have fled the armed conflict were present in Montenegro, a proportionally higher figure than the previous assessment conducted, when about 6,000 Ukrainians were registered in the country. Interestingly, the Ukrainian refugee population currently represents 1.2% of the official Montenegrin population. 3Most of them stay in the coastal area of the country, with friends or relatives or by renting houses/apartments. The cities where there is the greatest presence of Ukrainians are Budva, Bar, Herceg Novi, Tivat and Podgorica.
Between 19 and 31 May, IOM conducted the second rapid displacement and needs assessment in Montenegro in four locations
(Podgorica, Bar, Budva, Herceg Novi) to gather up-to-date information and verify any changes, particularly in terms of the unmet needs of the target population. Compared to the first assessment conducted (available here), this time, the IOM has focused on the coastal area, excluding Bijelo Polje as currently fewer Ukrainians are present there. IOM has decided to focus and prioritize Montenegro as the country continues to have the highest percentage of Ukrainian refugees currently residing in the WB (almost two-thirds of the total Ukrainians present), mainly due to cultural ties, as many have been to the country at other times for tourism reasons or as home/apartment owners but also because the Ukrainian community previously established in the country serves as a pull factor for many fleeing their war-torn homeland. On 13 March 2022, the government of Montenegro issued the decision on granting temporary protection to all persons fleeing Ukraine for a period of one year, renewable. The procedure for obtaining temporary protection should last up to 30 days from the date of submission of the application, during which period, applicants receive a confirmation of submission according to which the most vulnerable categories, such as pregnant women, the chronically ill, children, persons with urgent health problems, can immediately access health care. However, of the 2,530 requests for temporary protection submitted as of March 13, of which 70 per cent adults (76% female and 24% male) and 30 per cent children (of which 23% under 5 years of age), only 434 requests had been resolved.