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"They beat us until we lost our breath and threw us on the Bosnian border"

Date & Time 2023-12-06
Location Around Čujića Krčevina, Croatia
Reported by Anonymous Partner
Coordinates 44.8221792, 15.6612853
Pushback from Croatia
Pushback to Bosnia
Taken to a police station no
Minors involved yes
WLTI* involved no
Men involved yes
Age 6 - 27
Group size 12
Countries of origin Syria
Treatment at police station or other place of detention
Overall number of policemen and policewomen involved 2
Violence used beating (with batons/hands/other), kicking, pushing people to the ground, insulting, destruction of personal belongings, theft of personal belongings
Police involved 2 Croatian special military police wearing green military uniforms. 1 Croatian military police car, white with a green band on the side.

On the night of December 6th, 2023, at around 4 AM CET, 12 people from Syria – aged 6 to 27 – were apprehended by 2 men in the area around Čujića Krčevina (HR) and later pushed back from Croatia to Bosnia and Herzegovina. The respondent is a 23-year-old man from Syria who was in the mentioned group.

The respondent revealed that someone from his group saw a white car with a darker-colored band on the side, which later in the light appeared to be a green band. He said that he then saw two men in a green military uniform – resembling the uniform worn by the Croatian special military police forces – exit the car and approach the group, shouting to stop.

The men in a uniform ordered everyone to start undressing, and to give them their jackets, pants, and shoes. They also confiscated most of their phones and destroyed them, while the respondent states that he was able to hide his own. After this, the two men wearing the uniform started beating all the men in the group, but didn’t beat the younger children. According to the respondent’s testimony, there were indeed 2 six-year-old boys and 1 nine-year-old boy. The 16-year-old boy present in the group was beaten along with the adults, all men. The men in the green uniform kicked and beat all the adults very harshly, pushing them to the ground even if there was snow and ice. One 6-year-old boy “fainted out of fear for his father when he saw what they were doing to him”, the respondent said.

After being brutally beaten up “with such rage, like they were about to kill some animals”, the members of the group were all squeezed into the previously described car, which the respondent outlined to be way too small for all of them, and they were thrown out of the car at 5 km from the Bosnian border. This happened at 5 AM CET.

The group then walked back to Bosnia and Herzegovina.