4 Syrian men, aged 15, 21, 23, 25, were pushed back from Hungary to Serbia, near the official border gate between Hungarian town of Röszke and the Serbian town of Horgoš, on the 15th of November at 5.30 am.
On the 14th of November at 11.30 pm, the respondents started to walk from serbian village of Majdan towards the Romanian border for 30 minutes. After they had crossed the Romanian border they kept walking towards the Hungarian border for 10 kilometers, and they crossed it around 1 am. While they were walking they saw a big black snake in the forest and they started to run because they got really scared. The respondents described:
“Since the only thing on our minds at that moment was to get rid of the snake, we started running carelessly through the forest, and by the time we noticed the parked black car, it was too late”.
While running, they saw a black car parked, with two men inside that they described as “soldiers” because of the camouflage uniforms they were wearing. Reportedly, these 2 men directly called for reinforcement. Therefore, 2 more people arrived, who the respondents thought were border police officers because of the dark blue uniforms they were wearing. They first took photographs of the respondents and then the group was taken to another place where the respondents described:
“These policemen must have planned to beat us beforehand, because they took us to another place where the soldiers would not see us. There was a big hole in the ground and they put us there.”
The pit, the respondents showed on the maps, was in a forest near the intersection of a highway called Kübekházi út and a secondary road. One of them said that they were frisked and that the officers threw one phone on the ground while breaking another. One of the men described as a police officer who even took their USB cables said he would use them in his car. The respondents described the violence they were subjected to for half an hour in this pit:
“To beat us, they wore special gloves fortified with metal. He punched me in the face with the metal part of the glove on my face. Then it was the turn of all of us, one by one.”
Afterwards, a large green vehicle arrived, which they deduced from the writing on it to be a police car, with no windows and a cage inside. The police officers in dark blue uniforms left after locking people in the cage in the back of this vehicle, and the respondents could not see who was driving the car. After a two-hour drive three male and one female officer, in dark blue uniforms as well, pushed people out of the car with their batons, while a female police officer with a camera took pictures. One of the respondents said:
“One of them, a big male policeman, started shouting at us, “Go to Ukraine and fight with Putin, why are you coming to our country?” I was so confused, I didn’t understand what we had to do with Ukraine.”
They were brought near the official border crossing in the hungarian town of Röszke and were pushed back into the Serbian town of Horgos: “While they opened the door and forced us to cross by pushing us to the other side with their batons, they were still shouting “Get out of here” and cursing us while shining flashlights in our faces.
One of the respondents who went up to a Serbian police officer on the serbian side of the official gate and asked how they could get a taxi said that the policeman slapped him in the face and threatened him with his gun.
The respondents whose feet were soaked wet and who said they were very cold while waiting inside the vehicle tried to warm themselves by lighting a fire in the forest before walking back to Horgoš.