On the 18th of January, 70 people have been pushed back from Croatia to Bosnia. Among the people, there was also a family with two women.
The two respondents said that on the 16th of January the 70 people took a bus from Bihać in order to get to Banja Luka; within the group there were Afghani, Pakistani, Bengali and one Nepalese family consisting of father, mother and daughter.
The group crossed the border by foot from Banja Luka and arrived to Croatia; they spent lot of time walking and finally, on the 18th, they arrived on the place where they were supposed to start their game on a truck.
At around 6 p.m, all the 70 people sat on the truck, but after 15 minutes they were caught by 3 police officers belonging, as the respondent claims, to Border Police (Granicna Policija). After 15 minutes, other 11 police officers arrived.
Police split the group in two: around 35 people were loaded in a police van and immediately brought to the border close to Bihać, including the family and one of the two respondents.
“I didn’t ask for asylum because it’s the border, they don’t give asylum. But the family asked for a stay, the policeman said wait, and then they deported them.”
The police brought the first group close to Bihać and then stole their phones, money, bags and their second pair of shoes.
“They stole lot of things, also the medicines from one the girls; those were important medicines for her, she took it everyday.”
The second group, in which there was the other respondent, was loaded in another van and brought in a police station which was 20 minutes far from the place where they were caught.
Police kept them there until the following day, and asked them some informations about their life and about their game; they made them write their names on a white paper and then took a picture with them holding that paper. They also checked all the people all over their body.
“I felt like a prisoner. The bedroom were ok, with hot water, but there were 10 beds and we were 18. We stayed there 20 hours, they gave us food only in the morning. They were not that bad, but they confiscated our bags and mobiles.”
After many hours at the police station, on the 19th, in late afternoon, the second group was driven with a prisoner van in close proximity to Bihać, but on the Croatian side. The respondent claims the group stayed inside the van for 4 hours, but he’s not completely sure about the amount of time spent.