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Talking or looking up was punished by the use of pepper-spray in both eyes and in the mouth

Date & Time 2022-09-13
Location Border near Horgoš
Reported by No Name Kitchen
Coordinates 46.17627793, 19.97937618
Pushback from Hungary
Pushback to Serbia
Taken to a police station no
Minors involved yes
WLTI* involved no
Men involved yes
Age 16 - 40
Group size 25
Countries of origin Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia
Treatment at police station or other place of detention photos taken
Overall number of policemen and policewomen involved 43
Violence used beating (with batons/hands/other), kicking, pepper spray, electric shock, pouring water over one's head, theft of personal belongings, Use of knife
Police involved 18 Hungarian officers in camouflage uniform, 25 border police officers (nationality unclear), 1 blue police van, 1 police car, 1 green car

On 13.09.2022 at 1:00 AM, a group of 25 people crossed the border fence between Serbia and Hungary nearby the Serbian City of Horgoš. The group consisted of people of Moroccan, Algerian, and Tunisian origin, aged 20-40 years old, with the exception of one minor, who was 16. All members of the group were male.

The respondent reported that the group had walked 30 m after crossing the fence, when a group of 18 officers, described as military, arrived and intercepted them. The respondent described that the officers were wearing camouflage uniforms, black balaclavas, and headlamps. The soldiers promptly started beating the members of the group with batons.

After more or less 5 minutes, they started asking for their documents and searched them immediately after. The respondent described how the military officers fought between one another over who had to be in charge of conducting the search. He also recalled that the officers started using a “big knife” to cut open their jackets, while they were still wearing them, to get access to the insides of their pockets. When the jacket of the respondent got ripped open he held onto his passport and phone. During the officers’ attempt to take the items out of his hands, he suffered a cut into his finger. The respondent also reported that 60€ were stolen from him.

Another member of the group got taken away his phone and was forced, through threats of more beating, to enter the password, which he did.

None of the items taken by the officers were returned to any member of the group. The respondent says that they were put into a plastic bag and thrown away.

Then, the officers forced them to lie prone on the ground. They beat them with batons and kicked them, ordering them not to talk and not to look up. The respondent explained how one group member said “please”, to which the officers responded by saying “no please” and hitting and kicking him even more. Talking or looking up was also punished by the use of pepper spray in both eyes and the mouth.

Some group members, at that point, were even doused with water and tasered in their necks.

The assaults took place continuously for 2 hours: from 2 AM until 4 AM. The respondent reported that the officers were laughing and joking while assaulting them. The only member of the group who was not physically assaulted was the minor.

Eventually, a blue police van arrived, in which the group was loaded. They were driven for 15 minutes to the border crossing area. The van was accompanied by two smaller cars. One was identified as a police car and one was described as being of green color. At the border crossing the group was awaited by 25 police officers in blue uniforms, who took their pictures. After that, they were taken by one of the military officers beyond the Serbian border control. While they were following him, he told them not to talk to him, not to look at him and to keep a distance from him. Still the respondent explained how he saw white writing on the officer’s uniform. It said “HUN”.
After the group was again in Serbian territory they had to walk 3 kilometers before reaching an abandoned house that they could use as shelter. There they arrived at 5 AM.

One group member had to go to the hospital due to an injury that was created by a baton hit on the eye. The other injuries were left untreated until date.