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We were forced to keep our heads down while they kicked us in the legs

Date & Time 2023-10-06
Location Röszke-Horgoš border crossing, Hungary
Reported by Collective Aid
Coordinates 46.174767572621, 19.980354309082
Pushback from Hungary
Pushback to Serbia
Taken to a police station no
Minors involved no
WLTI* involved no
Men involved no
Age 15 - 25
Group size 20
Countries of origin Afghanistan
Treatment at police station or other place of detention
Overall number of policemen and policewomen involved 9
Violence used kicking, dog attacks, forcing people to keep their heads down, body searching
Police involved First, 5 Hungarian border officers in a normal police car. Later, 3 more Hungarian border officers joined in a big van.

The respondent is a 17 year-old male from Afghanistan. On the early morning of Friday, October 6th, approximately around 5.00 am, a group of 20 Afghan men between the ages of 15 and 25 crossed over the border from Horgoš, Serbia, into Röszke, Hungary. Once in Hungary, they walked for an hour through a forested area until they were intercepted by what the respondent described as 5 Hungarian border officers in a police car. The respondent further identified the uniforms and vehicles of Hungarian border police when shown some photographs provided for description.

According to the respondent, the group of men tried to run away but the police used dogs to scare them and apprehend them. Once they were all put together in a group, they were forced to keep their heads down while they were body searched and repeatedly kicked in the legs. Their belongings weren’t taken from them. A big white van with 3 more Hungarian border officers arrived later, but the respondent couldn’t properly identify any visible insignia in their uniforms due to the darkness and having his head forcefully down.

After this, they were all driven back to the border with Serbia at the Horgoš border crossing, where they were dropped off and made to cross back to Serbia. This was the 9th time that the respondent had been pushed back from Hungary to Serbia, all in violent circumstances. When he was asked whether they had expressed their intention to ask for asylum, he responded that it wouldn’t have made a difference.