Two young men from Afghanistan, both between 20 and 25 years old, were reportedly pushed back together with a Kurdish family and two men from Pakistan, from Croatia to Bosnia on Tuesday 26th April.
The two men declared that they left Velika Kladusa at 3 pm on Monday 25th. They crossed the border at 4:30pm, and continued to walk in the forest until 10 pm in the evening when they stopped to rest for about one hour. They explained that then, the group continued their journey until 3:30 am. Near Glinica the group stopped to take a rest and change their clothes. At 4:30 am they left their resting place and approached the Glina bus station. They related, that in the city they noticed many cars described as from the police driving around the streets. They explained that they had to change direction several times trying to avoid the cars which they thought were looking for them. The two men wanted to try to take the bus to Zagreb and so they reportedly decided to take the risk of exposure to the cars and just go to the bus station. According to their testimony, here they were stopped by 2 cars. The respondents described that in total there were four men in dark blue uniforms, at least one of them allegedly had the word “policija” written on the back.
The respondents were brought to a place described as a police station nearby. They reported that they expressed their intention to apply for asylum but the men in uniform asked for some documents. “What kind of documents? What kind of specific documents, please tell me what documents do you need! After that the police stop to think but a car arrived to deport us”.
The respondents pointed out the fact that beyond the problem of requesting documents that they did not have, the men in uniform never explained to them what kind of documents were needed. The respondents said that they were aware that people who are in possession of passports are also pushed back. “They could’t answer my question. I’m going to call my family and ask for all the documents in my room cause I don’t know which documents I need. But they don’t know either, it’s just an excuse to deport “.
After that, the two men from Afghanistan were reportedly put into the car and taken to the border. They explained that a Kurdish family was already in the car. They consisted of 3 children, a woman, and three men, also with them were three young men from Pakistan. The respondents said that the drive was not too bad compared to other pushback experiences, “but I still hate the car, everyone hate the car”.
The interviewees stated that at the border, they got down from the car and were forced to cross the border back into Bosnia and Herzegovina. The respondents described that the way back was hard for the group. “It was hard cause our shoes were tight, big problem for us. We were also hungry “. They walked for what seemed like 2-3 hours to them to a gas station where they rested for a while. Here they allegledly waited for a bus to get back to Velika Kladusa.