Hungarian Police Attack Journalists at the Border

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( — September 18, 2015) — The latest information from Serbian-Hungary border is that the incident happened Wednesday afternoon, after the Hungarian police let the large group of refugees to come closer than 10 yards, then the police charged them with rubber sticks, spraying tear-gas and firing water cannons.

Serbian National Television RTS reported that among dozens injured immigrants, including woman and children, were the Serbian ENG (Electronic News gathering) crew who tried to capture the incident.  The crew was severely beaten by the Hungarian police, who also wrecked their camera and audio equipment.

Reportedly, the Hungarian police threw the Serbian cameraman against the wall, hitting him in the head and on the back with sticks and smashing his camera on the concrete. Hungarian police also beat the microphone operator smashing his gear as well.

The Hungarian police also brutally beat the on-camera journalist Jovana Djurovic, breaking her arm. Clearly shaken, she later reported the whole incident using another TV crew’s gear.

The assaulted crew told media they were on no-one’s land between Serbian-Hungarian border when the incident occurred. They were positioned between police cordon and the refugees with clearly visible “press” labels and professional gear.

Before the police attacked the refugees, they first beat journalists to prevent them from recording what was going to happened next. With the cameras out of the way, the Hungarian police brutally assaulted all the refugees, including the woman and children. After the first brutal strike, the journalists from the Hungarian media start reporting that the police “wasn’t [sic] left any choice” after refugees “broke the razor-wire fence and charged the police with stones and water bottles.”

From the hospital the Serbian National TV cameraman later reported that the Hungarian police were deliberately destroying the expensive equipment beyond the repair so the damage would be as great as possible.  

The crew reputedly shouted that they were from Serbian National TV, but they were still targeted by the police. Reportedly, the Hungarian journalists who deliberately ignored their countrymen’s actions were loudly cursing their Serbian colleagues for trying to film the raid.

Hungary officials blamed Serbian side for the incident accusing the Serbians of allowing armed refugees to get close to the border. In fact, Serbian humanitarian organizations “armed” the refugees with small plastic water bottles. Allegedly, the incident occurred after Hungarian police felt threatened as someone from the crowd threw one of the plastic water bottles at the police.