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"Three men with a balaclava beat us with their sticks and soaked my shoes in the river"

Date & Time 2024-01-14
Location Area around Drežnik Grad, Croatia
Reported by Anonymous Partner
Coordinates 44.9461324, 15.6825835
Pushback from Croatia
Pushback to Bosnia
Taken to a police station yes
Minors involved no
WLTI* involved no
Men involved yes
Age 18 - 30
Group size 7
Countries of origin Morocco
Treatment at police station or other place of detention fingerprints taken, denial of access to toilets, denial of food/water
Overall number of policemen and policewomen involved
Violence used beating (with batons/hands/other), kicking, pushing people to the ground, insulting, forcing to undress, destruction of personal belongings, theft of personal belongings
Police involved 3 Croatian special policemen, with black uniforms and a balaclava covering their faces. 1 police car, light blue and white. 1 white van.

The respondent is a 29-year-old man from Morocco. He was traveling with 8 other people, aged 18-30 years old through Croatia. Around 5 PM CET on January 14th, 2024 the group was caught in Slunj (HR) by a group of three men wearing a dark uniform and a balaclava, resembling the clothes worn by the Croatian special police officers.

These three men stopped the group and started to beat the Moroccan men with batons, and by punching and kicking them. One of the men with the balaclava forced the respondent to remove his shoes, soaked them in the river, and gave him back forcing him to wear them. All the members of the group had to give their phones to the three men, who proceeded to break them with their batons.

The group was then brought to a place where a white van and a white car with a light blue band were parked and they were forced to get inside of them. The group was transported to a police station, where the officers had taken their fingerprints. The respondent states that they stayed in the police station for around 4 hours, without the chance to go to the toilet or access to food or water. They were then forced back in the cars and brought to the border with Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The group was pushed back to BiH at around 11 PM CET of the same day and walked back to Bihac.