Hungarian police use tear gas on refugees in camp

August 26, 2015

Photo: Index.hu
Photo: Index.hu

Hungarian police used tear gas to drive back about 200 refugees housed at the immigration registration camp in Röszke. The camp is located between Szeged and Hungary’s border with Serbia, and serves as a registration point for those migrants who are detained after crossing illegally into Hungary.

There are conflicting reports on the cause of the commotion which prompted the police to use tear gas on the refugees.

Hungarian media outlets Index.hu and MNO.hu both report the incident took place at around 10:30 am.  Index.hu writes the refugees were trying to seek shelter underneath a hangar in the camp after it started to rain.

MNO.hu reports the refugees tried to approach the camp’s perimeter fence to speak with reporters about being dissatisfied with their treatment.

As the group of refugees became more and more agitated, Hungarian police parked buses between the perimeter fence and the refugees to shield the press from seeing what was happening.  The press is not permitted to enter the camp.

The police then brought in an interpreter to address the refugees over a loudspeaker, writes Hungarian news site DélMagyar.hu. Shortly after, police instructed members of the press to move away from the fence.

About twenty minutes later the police reportedly used tear gas on the refugees. This was confirmed both by Hungarian police officers and Csongrád County Police Department spokesman Szabolcs Szenti.

Szenti says about 200 refugees tried to leave the camp without providing thumb prints to the authorities.

The commotion soon ended, and by 11:20 am buses arrived to transport refugees from the severely overcrowded camp.