In the morning of the 29th of May, a group of nine Syrian men were pushed back from Romania to Serbia around Majdan.
The respondent – a 20-year-old man – described the group of 9 people were walking by a small river close to the border in Romania when they saw a dark blue police SUV drive around. They split in two smaller groups of four and five and hid under a small bridge to not be seen.
The group of five – including the respondent – were the further away from the car that went passed them, the group of four was closer. The car turned around, found the group of four men and reportedly arrested them. According to the respondent the officer then seemed to be looking for more people. Four men from the group of five ran away hoping to hide among trees. The respondent didn’t have the time to do that, so he explained he laid down in the river to try and hide. But the car came closer and saw him.
Two officers were inside, both in dark blue uniforms with white writings, one of them reportedly wearing a balaclava.
The officer not wearing a balaclava went out of the car towards the respondent and clapped “Bravo it was good to try and hide from us by laying down there but we saw you”. He immediately grabbed his baton and reportedly started to beat him. The respondent explained he tried to protect his head from the hits with his arms. At the time of giving the testimony, which was an estimated two hours after the respondent was pushed back, there were three bruises forming on his left forearm.
The respondent added that after him the officer also beat the other members of the group that were arrested. Shortly after, a big van came and picked all the nine guys up to bring them back towards Serbia where they were pushed back close to Majdan around 12:00.