Ban Ki-moon, the UN Secretary-General has voiced concern over the treatment of refugees on the border of Hungary and Serbia after Hungarian police attacked the asylum seekers.
On Wednesday Hungarian police deployed tear gas and water cannon against refugees who broke through a razor wire fence that was erected along the border crossing with Serbia.
Press TV reports: “I was shocked to see how these refugees and migrants were treated, it’s not acceptable,” Ban said during a news conference on Wednesday.
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He stressed that the refugees are escaping wars and persecutions in their countries and as a result, “we must show our compassionate leadership.”
“They must be treated with human dignity and human rights,” the UN chief said. “That’s my consistent message to European and Asian leaders.”
The remarks came shortly after Hungarian police used tear gas and water cannon to disperse protesting refugees that sought to enter the country from Serbia.
Hundreds of riot police, along with special anti-terrorist units with armored vehicles and water cannon, moved towards a crowd of refugees at the Roszke border crossing on Wednesday.
Hungarian police said a group of what they called “aggressive” refugees has broken through the fence.
The Hungarian government says the clashes have left 20 policemen and two children injured.
“So far 20 policemen have been injured and ambulance services have just taken two children (to hospital) who were injured after being thrown over the security fence,” the prime minister’s security adviser Gyorgy Bakondi told public television.
He added that Budapest would restore and strengthen the fence, while government spokesman Zoltan Kovacs said police would not allow any refugees to break through into Hungarian territory.
Following the confrontation between the refugees and Hungarian police, Budapest called on Serbia to take action against migrants “attacking” police on their border.
Claiming that a group of “very aggressive” refugees persistently attacks Hungarian police with “rocks and pieces of concrete,” Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said, “This attack is coming from Serbia, Serbian territory. Therefore, I firmly asked my Serbian colleague to call on Serbian authorities to act immediately against this aggressive group of migrants.”
Serbia’s Foreign Ministry later said in a statement that Hungary had informed Belgrade of ordering a 30-day suspension of the Roszke-Horgos border crossing between the two neighbors.
Serbia’s Interior Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic, meanwhile, announced plan about sending additional police to its border with Hungary and efforts to prevent refugees from approaching the border fence.
Budapest also plans to extend its border fence toward Romania in a bid to prevent the flow of refugees seeking to travel to northern Europe.
The move has angered Romania, which summoned the Hungarian ambassador to the country to express its concerns, with State Secretary George Ciamba saying in a statement the Hungarian government has failed to inform Bucharest of the plan and calling it “out of step with the spirit of Europe.”
Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban, furthermore, said in an interview with Austrian newspaper Die Presse published on Wednesday that his country would build a fence along parts of its border with Croatia.
“We have decided to build a fence also on the border with Romania,” Orban said, noting, “We will also erect a fence at certain locations on the Croatian border.”