Balkan Region Report – June 2020

The Border Violence Monitoring Network published 20 cases of illegal pushbacks during June, documenting the experience of 351 people whose rights were violated at the European Union’s external border. Volunteers in the field recorded a variety of cruel and abusive acts by officers, representing at least ten different national authorities. This report summarises the data and narrative testimony shared by people-on-the-move, highlighting the depth of violence being carried out in the service of hard borders.

The report analyses among other things:

  • Knife attacks by Croatian police
  • EU cover-up of abused monitoring funds
  • Drownings in the Mrežnice and Korona rivers
  • Pushbacks from Romania and Italy
  • Violence in Evros region and the Aegean Sea

Further analysis is also given to the use of weapons and specialised vehicles by Frontex in their Albania mission. Legal developments in both Hungary and Serbia are also noted, showing how processes of alignment and deviation from EU law are impacting asylum seekers rights.  While in Greece, attacks on NGOs and groups accessing aid reached a peak in June. Five years on from the “summer of migration”, physical and system based violence at borders remains incredibly high in the Balkan Region and Greece.




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