On August 15th. 2018, the respondent and 9 other men, including two minors, walked from Velika Kladuša, crossed Croatia, and wanted to continue through Slovenia further to Italy. The interviewees report that, when the whole group was walking in a forest close to Stara Lipa around 6 pm, they were caught by a group of 11 police officers. The officers questioned the men about their nationalities and called for more police officers and a van, which later transported all the men to a police station. The interviewee did not know the location of the police station because the car in which they were being transported had dark windows and the police did not give the men any information about where they were being transported. The interviewee only remembered that the police station where they were taken, was a 20 minute drive from the place of their apprehension (Stara Lipa).
Once, the men arrived at the police station, they had to fill out a document, stating their name, parents’ names, their nationality and their intention of movement in Slovenia. The respondent was the only one who did not express his intention to stay in Slovenia and apply for asylum there. Instead, he told the police that he wanted to continue to Italy. After that, the police took their fingerprints. Based on the fingerprinting process, the police found out that this was the respondents fourth time entering Slovenia, and accused him of being a smuggler. The two police officers took him to a closed container inside of the police station, where he reports that they were verbally threatening him and physically attacking him:
They took me to container. Two women police were sitting on the chair and two men started beating me. They were beating me for ten minutes with sticks and their hands. But you know, they were beating me not hard, to not to leave any marks on my body. And those two women were just sitting there and watching. The men who were beating, were calling me “picko matre, picko matre”. They kept beating me into my legs, head and back. They treated me like animal.
The respondent was the only one who was beaten by the officers. Later on, eight of the men, including him, were transported from Slovenia to Croatia, and from there to Bosnia. Only one boy, a 16 years old minor, was allowed to stay in Slovenia and claim asylum there. The respondent explained that the Croatian police were acting nice to them during their expulsion back to Bosnia and they had no problems with them.
The interviewee had pain in the back of his head (vertex), his right elbow, and his leg, caused by the physical attack by the Slovenian police officers. He declined to take photographs of his injured arms and bruises to protect his anonymity.