The respondent, a 39- year old Moroccan man, left Velika Kladusa, BiH alone to enter Croatia and from there travel to Slovenia to ask for asylum. After 15 days of travel, he was stopped by two Slovenian police officers between Novo Mesto and Ljubljana (SLO) while he was walking through an unpaved street next to a mountain at night around 11 p.m. The respondent describes the police wearing light blue uniforms with the Slovenian flag and the word Policija written on it. He also remembers that the officers were driving a Renault car with the word ‘Policija’ written on it. He immediately expressed to the police that he was trying to reach the Ljubljana refugee camp and file an asylum request there. The police ignored the request and reacted with physical violence instead.
The respondent describes how he was pushed onto the ground. Then one police officer was kicking his head and the other man hitting him with a baton on his legs. After a while, the police called for another two officers with the same uniform and the respondent was driven to a nearby police station in a police van described to be white with a blue stripe:
“They were driving recklessly as always, I couldn’t breathe, there was only a small hole for the air. I wanted to vomit, when we arrived, they said ‘welcome to Ljubljana camp’ joking with me.”
After arriving at the police station, which the respondent claims was the Zagrad police station, the respondent was brought into a military caravan where he was held in detention. Around 1 a.m., he was woken up to be interrogated. Here his fingerprints and pictures were taken, he was handed a document written in Slovenian to sign, and charged with a sort of border-crossing fee. A Syrian translator was called to attend, though clearly resulting useless, as the Moroccan dialect is very different than the Arabic spoken in Syria. The respondent was provided with rotten food (very old bread and rotten butter) that he did not eat. Afterward, the respondent was taken back to the caravan to sleep. The next day, two other officers asked him to sign more documents, which the respondent refused to sign, thus the officers signed them for him. After being asked what he was doing in Slovenia, the respondent claimed once again he was trying to seek asylum. At this point, his phone was taken and reset, then returned.
The respondent was told that he would be brought to the Croatian police with the specific indication to tell them that he did not want to claim asylum but wanted to return to Morocco instead. He opposed to doing as they ordered:
“I told them it was not legal! It was not human! They laughed ha, ha, ha. This is Europe, here they are supposed to take care of refugees, but they were so racist, so racist.”
The respondent was threatened to be arrested if he would not follow the order, and threatened that they would leave him handcuffed in the mountains for animals to eat him. Hence, was driven to the Croatian border with a police van.
When he was approached by the Croatian police, he told them he wanted to ask for asylum in Ljubljana and everything that had happened previously. The Croatian police expressed their sorrow but however gave him papers written in Croatian to sign, which once again the respondent refused to sign. However, he was driven in a regular blue Skoda car with no police signs to a place at the Bosnian border close to Velika Kladusa. There he was forced to cross the border back into Bosnia.
“They told me they were sorry. I was shocked it was the first time Croatian police was being nice to me. Then, they brought me to the border with Bosnia, and told me: that is the way to Bosnia”