Migrants Continue Hunger Strike At Serbia-Hungary Border

  • 28 Jul 2016 9:00 AM
Migrants Continue Hunger Strike At Serbia-Hungary Border
Around 90 migrants have been holding a hunger strike at the Serbia- Hungary border near Horgos for the fourth consecutive day, demanding that Hungary open its border to them, an MTI correspondent reported from the site. According to unconfirmed reports, another 100 migrants wanted to join the protest at the Subotica reception centre early on Wednesday, but police prevented it.

Around ten police officers have been sent to the site to patrol nearby areas and maintain peace and order. On Sunday, 130 of the 300-400 migrants who had set off from Belgrade to Serbia’s northern border late last week arrived at the Horgos- Röszke border zone demanding passage through Hungary to western Europe.

The migrants, mainly from Afghanistan and Pakistan, then told public news channel M1’s correspondent that they planned to start a hunger strike in protest of Hungary’s tightened border rules. One of them said they would protest at the border for 3-4 days but some members of the group later left for the nearby transit zone while several others joined.

According to press reports, three members of the group were taken to hospital in Subotica on Tuesday afternoon because they showed signs of distress.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday evening, five Algerian and two Moroccan migrants escaped from a detention centre in Kiskunhalas, in southern Hungary, the prime minister’s chief security advisor said. György Bakondi told a press conference that police have caught three of the migrants and know the whereabouts of two others.

The guards discovered that the migrants were gone while taking roll after having thwarted an escape attempt by another Algerian national, he said.

He said Hungary’s new border regulations introduced at the beginning of the month have strengthened the protection of the country’s southern border and reduced the occupancy rates at refugee reception centres.

Bakondi welcomed the help offered by Austria and the other three Visegrad countries of the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland in patrolling Hungary’s southern border.

The improved international cooperation in border protection has also made crackdowns on human smuggling rings more effective, he added.

Republished with permission of Hungary Matters, MTI’s daily newsletter.

MTI photo: Balogh Zoltán

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