Today four years have passed since the “Röszke riot”, the attack of the Hungarian riot police and TEK (counter-terrorism unite) on protesting migrants against borders and limitation of freedom of movement in 16th of September 2015. During and after this riot eleven people were arrested and later faced a court trial. Ahmed H., one of the arrested eleven people was convicted for terrorism and sentenced first to 10, than to 7 and on the last court instance to 5 years prison.Continue reading #Röszke 11 // #FreeAhmed: The Cyprian government denies Ahmed’s return to his family
On the 30th of October and 2nd of November 2017 the Hungarian states’ trial against Ahmed H. went into the next round of seemingly absurd and endless rounds. Ahmed’s case is now back at the first court level, after the second instance referred it back to the first level for lack of consideration of contradictions in the evidence.
In a case that Amnesty International has called an “affront to justice”, Ahmed H., a Syrian with residency in Cyprus, has been charged with violating anti-terrorism laws for participating in a protest in Röszke, Hungary, during September 2015.
On April 15th, 2017 there will be a transnational demonstration at the Hugarian/Serbian border. In the call for the demonstration, Migszol writes: “We demonstrate against the dehumanizing state-propaganda! We demonstrate against any kind of detention of people seeking asylum and migrants! We demonstrate against the illegal practice of violence by the Hungarian authorities on the border!
On February 28th 2017 the second level court hearing against ten of the Röszke 11 – all but Ahmed H., who was sentenced to ten years of prison in a separate trial – was held in Szeged. The only person remaining in Hungarian custody and therefore present at the court hearing was Yamen A. The other nine people have left Hungary some month ago and claimed asylum in other European countries. Albeit two of them left Europe under the “voluntary return” act due to the immense pressure imposed on them and the threat to deport them back to Hungary under the Dublin Regulation.
Two of the so-called Roeszke 11 are still imprisoned in Hungary. Ahmed H., a Syrian man was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment on “terrorism” charges during November of 2016. Yamen A. was sentenced to to 3 years the next month. Yamen’s appeal against his sentence will start on February the 28th. The other 9 people of the Roeszke 11 were released after they finished their sentence and left Hungary.
Migszol November update (December 22, 2016): The border policy of the Hungarian government has been successful in closing the border to most people seeking international protection. As a result, refugee camps and detention centers in Hungary are relatively empty and the media frenzy has subsided. The report of the Hungarian Helsinki Committee, however, shows that the number of people stopped from entering the country in irregular ways has increased since the beginning of the year. At the same time, the number of asylum requests has shrunk significantly since July when the 8 km law was introduced. This, of course, has consequences for activists and volunteers, who now operate in an environment where it is increasingly difficult to have direct contact with people seeking protection. This increases the vulnerability of people, because there is less information on which activists and volunteers can act. First and foremost, however, this has consequences in Serbia, where more and more people are getting stranded.