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Croatian police continues with violent pushbacks of migrants to Serbia

Text: APC  Photo: APC

Šid, October 4 – According to the information collected by legal and psychosocial officers of APC/CZA during a visit to camps and open locations in the north of Serbia, dozens of migrants from Afghanistan, Algeria, Iraq and Iran try to cross the Croatian border every day. Croatian police forcibly pushes migrants back to Serbia, if catched in an illegal attempt to cross the border. As we found out from the field, in the last two weeks, Croatia has strengthened border control, and the number of violent pushbacks has increased in the area around Šid and at border crossing Batrovci. Police officers use excessive physical force and detain migrants for 10 days if they find camp cards from Serbian reception centers.

Zahed (18) from Afghanistan testifies that on September 30 he was caught by Croatian police officers near Batrovci. According to him, he was ordered to lie down on his stomach, after which the policemen started hitting him on the back with batons. The policemen broke his phone and pushed him back to Serbia.

As APC/CZA team found out, up to 100 refugees a day try to cross into Croatian territory, in the vicinity of Šid, most often walking along the railway, or near the Batrovci and Šid border crossings.

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