After Spuž, a Center for the Reception Centre for Migrants and Asylum Seekers was opened in Božaj, near Podgorica, as well. The Centre can accommodate 60 people and is planned to function within the Ministry of Interior. Its construction was financed by the Government of Montenegro with €470 thousand and the European Union, which allocated €400 thousand from the pre-accession assistance funds (IPA) for the reconstruction of the former watchtower "Božaj" and the construction of the Centre.
The Head of the Sector for Cooperation in the EU Delegation, Herman Spitz, emphasised that Montenegro, despite all of the challenges the Government has to deal with, has shown its resolve to receive those migrants with respect and dignity.
"Another significant EU funded regional project will soon be implemented by the IOM and UNHCR. Within this project, some €700,000 have been earmarked for Montenegro. This regional project is an immediate response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the most vulnerable people. The EU financial assistance helps those in need of international protection in Montenegro with adequate hosting, medical, social, psychological, and technical support," Spitz said.
The Centre was opened by the Minister of Internal Affairs, Mevludin Nuhodzic, who emphasised that the reception centers in Spuž and Božaje are one of the indicators of the readiness of the Government of Montenegro to provide a safe shalter for migrants. He thanked the Delegation of the European Union, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Organisation for Migration, and the UNICEF Office for their significant support.
"This is the best way to affirm Montenegro's European perspectives, based on the successful application of the best experiences in the field of integrated migration and asylum management," said Nuhodzic.
The Centre wa built within the EU Integration Facility funded project “Technical Cooperation on Migration Management and Capacity Building” implemented from December 2018 to December 2019.