2 men from Algeria (25 and 20 years old), walked from Šid across the Serbian-Croatian border and were caught by what they described as 12 Croatian police officers, near Tovarnik Croatia, on the night between Friday 27th and Saturday October 28th. One man from Afghanistan, 18 years old, crossed the border by train, in a container and was caught by what he stated were several Croatian police officers, near the railway station of Tovarnik, Croatia at about the same time as the 2 men from Algeria.
All 3 men expressed their intention to apply for asylum. The respondents described how one big police van picked all three people, and transported them to Tovarnik police station. They all arrived at the police station on Saturday morning at about 5.30am. At the police station the belongings and bodies of the men were searched, and they were asked to hand over any belongings. The Afghan man showed them his mobile phone and the police insisted he should also show his money, the man needed to convince the police that he didn’t have any.
The police officer interviewing him was described as a big male, with a reddish face. The police said that if he tried to come back to Croatia another time, the police would catch him. Only one of the Algerians spoke with the police, the other did not speak any English. They were asked for their personal details which were written down, but no pictures were taken. All men once again expressed their intention to seek asylum. The other Algerian explained that the conditions they’re are living under in Serbia are unbearable, and that they needed to get to Croatia.
Afterwards the men were pushed back. They describe being transported in a police van, driven by what they assert were two Croatian police officers, to the border between Tovarnik, Croatia, and Šid, Serbia, next to the train rails outside the building where the Croatian border police controls the border. At this place the police violently assaulted them. The two police officers released the men from the car, and violently attacked them one by one, in a queue. The two Algerians were beaten with a stick, on their legs and back. Another police officer beat the Afghan with fists, punching his left cheek, the incident took a few minutes. Afterwards the men suffered from pain, but there were no severe injuries. The men were then pushed back to the Serbian side and they walked back to Šid (Serbia), where they arrived later on Saturday morning.