The COVID-19 pandemic has marked an unprecedented time, where governments and people have had to adapt quickly in order to survive.
Civil liberties have been sacrificed for the better good of the population and in our case, human rights infringements have happened under the watch of an authoritarian government using this virus as a means to validate their own political agenda. I believe your newspaper would be interested in shedding a light towards a story which has been grossly one-sided thus far in the media. The story is about 15 Iranian students, studying to become doctors/pharmacists and dentists in the EU nation of Hungary, who were recently deported shortly after, the passing of prime minister Viktor Orbán’s ‘total rule’ law.
Our ruling was made within days of our convictions, without the opportunity to a fair defence in court or a trial.
The basis of the expedited deportations and a 3 year EU ban were on the accusations of breaking mandatory hospitalized quarantine. We were forced into this quarantine when we were taken from our homes at 3am despite having signed a contractual agreement to home self-isolation. The conditions at the hospital did not follow WHO protocol as they confined 5-6 students into one room prior to testing our COVID-19 status’.
Many events followed with our time at the hospital including, failure to provide adequate PPE/ sanitary items in the joint rooms, failure to remove those with a positive COVID-19 test from the rooms and overall intimidation with the police presence at the hospital.
Following our hospital horrors many were transferred to detention centres 3 hours from the capital, which are in many sources, compared to maximum state prisons in other surrounding countries.
The series of unfortunate events ended with us all being stripped of our right to continue our educations in Hungary and any EU nation.
This story was covered in Hungarian national newspapers who only showed the governments narration of the story, leaving us students no opportunity to tell our side of the story, and the truth of the events. There are many other details and evidences to back our claims in which we would be happy to disclose to you should you want to print our story.
We have started a campaign (@VOISCAMPAIGN), to share our side of the story and details that the news has left out. We hope that this will bring to light some injustices that happened during this vulnerable time.