A Polish journalist is beaten up, an Australian kicked, a Swiss smashed with a rubber baton, and a Slovakian taken into custody by Hungarian police officers at Röszke

Author:sarkadizs Original title: Lengyel újságírót vertek, ausztrált rúgtak, svájcit gumibotoztak és szlovákot vittek el a magyar rendőrök Röszkén
Publication: 444.hu Date: 13:14 17/09/2015

A Polish journalist is beaten up, an Australian kicked, a Swiss smashed with a rubber baton, and a Slovakian taken into custody by Hungarian police officers at Röszke

On Wednesday, Serbian state television RTS claimed that an entire TV crew of theirs was assaulted by the Hungarian police on the public road at the border crossing of Röszke, when they clashed with migrants on Wednesday afternoon. Apart from the Serbs, however, several foreign journalists were attacked, as well.

One of the correspondents of the Polish state television was smashed in the head with a baton, despite the fact that, according to the Polish Embassy, he cried out to the police saying “Press, press!” He did not wear a vest marked “press”, but his colleague standing next to him was holding a television microphone.

The injuries of the journalist were tended to on the spot, after which he asked the Hungarian police officers to help him get back to the Serbian side. In response, police detained him and accused him of attempting illegal border crossing and taking part in an unannounced demonstration.

Warren Richardson, an Australian photojournalist, got kicked in the head, chest and leg. He has lived in Budapest for years and has a Hungarian family.

Together with his Australian and Polish colleagues, a Slovakian journalist was also taken into custody in Szeged for the night. The Polish journalist posted a photo on Twitter from their joint cell, as well.

A Swiss journalist claims to have been beaten up with a baton. He posted a picture of his bloody shirt and microphone on Twitter. He wrote that he had not expected this to happen to him in an EU country, but he thanked the migrants for having given him something to drink after the incident.

According to Zoltán Kovács, government spokesman, the media should not be present in the first rows of the clashes, as a policeman taking action is not able to decide who is attacking him and who is a member of press. He added that there are no journalists in custody, but that there is a legal procedure going on against three photographers; however, they are released and will be ordered to appear for sentencing.

According to György Bakondi, chief advisor to the Prime Minister, during the clashes yesterday the Hungarian police did their job lawfully, professionally and not to excess, under the direct control of their commander.

On Thursday, Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic announced that her government had sent a diplomatic note to Hungary because of the assault of the Serbian television crew. They asked Budapest to name those responsible, and to guarantee that such a case will not happen again.

During his press conference on Thursday, János Lázár stated, “we reject the accusations saying that the police launched the attack”.

(by way of Index and B92)

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