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Go, go, go and stop coming here!

Date & Time 2022-10-24
Location Horgos, Serbia
Reported by Collective Aid
Coordinates 46.17709661, 19.98327255
Pushback from Hungary
Pushback to Serbia
Taken to a police station unknown
Minors involved yes
WLTI* involved no
Men involved yes
Age 24 - 29
Group size 25
Countries of origin Afghanistan
Treatment at police station or other place of detention
Overall number of policemen and policewomen involved 11
Violence used beating (with batons/hands/other), insulting, pepper spray, destruction of personal belongings
Police involved 11 officers wearing dark blue, Hungarian 'rendorseg' uniform. 4 vehicles - all small border police cars.

A group of 25 men from Afghanistan were apprehended by police on the Hungarian side of the border at 1.00 am on 24th October. They had walked for just over 1km to the Serbian side of the border fence, climbed the fences, and were caught directly on the other side. The respondent explained that the group were running through the ‘jungle’ as quickly as possible being pursued by Hungarian officers. He said it was very dark and he cannot remember very much. Three men from this group spoke about their money being taken by officers and ripped up in front of them and their phones smashed. Multiple people in the transit group were reportedly pepper sprayed and according to the respondent, they were kicked at random by officers whilst being constantly shouted at.

From the photo below of the respondents hands, the longer lasting impact can be seen of what he referred to as pepper spray. He said that as the officers came to spray him he put his hands up to his eyes. The respondent also had skin damage on his forehead and above his lips, reportedly from the spray. The respondent explained that the ‘commando forces’ shouted at them to ‘go go go’ and ‘stop coming here!’

The rest of the report was interrupted by the arrival of journalists at the informal settlement. The time between being beaten and mocked by the police and the return to Horgos border is unclear. The respondent only said the entire group of 25 were apprehended on this evening at 01:00 am and taken from the forest around 3km from Horgos border crossing in police vans. They then walked back to the living site.