In July 1992, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Mrs. Sadako Ogata, convened a high-level meeting of governments and humanitarian agencies on humanitarian assistance in the former Yugoslavia. The meeting led to the establishment of the Humanitarian Issues Working Group (HIWG) of the International Conference on Yugoslavia. The HIWG was later subsumed under the umbrella of the Peace Implementation Council of the Dayton Peace Accords of 1995.
At that time, the HIWG was the only international forum which brought together states directly involved in or affected by the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia, neighbouring states, and donor governments. Since the establishment of the Stability Pact for South-Eastern Europe, the HIWG has become another forum for discussion of humanitarian and displacement issues under Table I of the Stability Pact. As secretariat for the HIWG, UNHCR has prepared a series of conference documents regarding the humanitarian aspects of the crisis in the former Yugoslavia.