“« We were 50, it was not possible to sit or breathe »”

  • Date and time: August 30, 2021 08:00
  • Location: Near road 55, Hungary
  • Coordinates: 46.245260886971, 20.023918450795
  • Pushback from: Hungary
  • Pushback to: Serbia
  • Demographics: 50 person(s), age: 15-40 , from: Afghanistan
  • Minors involved? Yes
  • Violence used: no violence used
  • Police involved: 8 Police officers (including 2 German speakers), 2 vans (including one with German inscription/Blue emblem)
  • Taken to a police station?: no
  • Treatment at police station or other place of detention: detention, photos taken, no translator present, denial of access to toilets, denial of food/water
  • Was the intention to ask for asylum expressed?: Yes
  • Reported by: Collective Aid

Original Report

The respondent, as part of a group of 13 people from Afghanistan, including one woman and 2-4 minors, tried to cross the Serbia-Hungary border on the 28th of August. They left from Horgos and walked for about 4 hours until they reached a spot in the forest near road 55, where they made a halt. They waited there for two nights. On Monday morning around 8AM, a Hungarian Police patrol appeared. The respondent recalls seeing a drone flying over the location beforehand.

The vehicle was a van equipped with computers and high tech equipment. The respondent further described the vehicle as displaying a blue logo and the German inscription « Polizei ». He also believes he has heard the officers speaking German.

A second patrol then joined the group, bringing the total of police officers present on the scene to 8.

The transit group was then brought to a container near the border. « We were 50, it was not possible to sit or breathe », recalls the repondent.

He states that a woman among the detainees informed the Hungarian Police of her intention to claim asylum but her demand was ignored. None of the detainees had access to water, food or toilet during the 3 hours they spent locked in this room.

Members of the group were then summoned to exit the detention area by pairs. They walked in line to the border door for 30 minutes, escorted by several police officers including some wearing camouflage uniforms.

Once they reached the border point, they were all asked to kneel down. A picture of each of them was taken. Each individual was then ordered to walk through the door that leads to the Serbian side of the border. A Hungarian Police officer filmed the whole process.