On Thursday 12th May 2022, a group of 3 men from Pakistan reportedly crossed the Croatian-Bosnian border near Velika Kladusa on foot and walked for 5 days until they reached Zagreb.
The respondent said that at that day, Tuesday, at some point in the morning, 2 men in a civilian car and wearing civilian clothes approached the group. These people allegedly told the group that they were from the police and they would give the group members “stay-papers” so they could then walk around freely.
The respondent explained that they waited at this place until another car came and brought them to what was described as a prison. The respondent said that they were there from 1pm/2pm to 6pm/7pm and then were taken back in a van to the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina near Velika Kladusa.
The respondent recalled that when his group was put in the van, there were already 7 people unknown to the respondent inside. He described the van as a “coffin” or “casket” because there were no windows or light at all. “There are no holes or anything”. He explained that it is very hot inside and it felt like there was no air. It was reportedly not possible to see what was happening outside the van.
The respondent said that the van stopped at the Croatian side of the border and described each member of the group being taken out of the van 1 by 1. After leaving the van, the respondent reported that he was surrounded by 4 men, described as wearing all black uniforms and ski masks. These people then “searched [him] completely” with his clothes being removed. Reportedly every person had their phones and any money they had with them stolen. The respondent described being beaten by 4 men in uniform each with black sticks. Then, still 1-by-1 they were told in which direction to walk back across the border.
The respondent showed his injured finger and said that he had been hit with a stick there and it felt like his finger had been broken as it had swollen very much. By the time the testimony was taken, the finger was less swollen but still visibly injured. We were also shown injuries on his leg and foot from where he said he was beaten by the men in uniform with the sticks.
“There are many cruel police, they don’t think we are human. They treat us like animals. Why don’t they treat all people the same.”
The respondent described being beaten by 4 officers each with sticks