A refugee family was detained for seven months at the Hungarian border. They have now won a lawsuit against the state. Read our article to get to know their horribly sad story.
The Strasbourg court has ruled that the Hungarian state unlawfully detained an Afghan family of four in the Röszke transit zone for 211 days in 2018, and ordered the state to pay EUR 15,000 in damages, the Hungarian Helsinki Committee said in a statement.
The case against the Hungarian state
The asylum-seeking family was represented by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee in the case against the Hungarian state before the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. The court ruled on Wednesday that the Hungarian state had detained the family in unlawful and inhuman conditions, without any effective legal remedy.
The Strasbourg court awarded the family EUR 15,000 in damages because the detention of the seriously ill mother, young children and starved father in a transit zone for seven months constituted inhuman, degrading and unlawful treatment, against which Hungary did not provide a judicial remedy.
They came to Hungary in April 2018
The family was forced to flee Afghanistan because the father, who was working as an interpreter for the US military, was threatened with death by the Taliban. After a long wait in Serbia, the Hungarian authorities allowed them to enter the transit zone in Röszke on 23 April 2018 to apply for asylum, Telex reports.
The mother and the older child, aged three, were in need of special health and psychosocial care due to the physical and psychological trauma they had suffered. The younger child, then one year old, had already broken their arm as a result of the unsuitable conditions in the container prison.
Family members who have experienced severe abuse and trauma have not received adequate care and accommodation from the asylum authorities during their detention for nearly 7 months, despite repeated requests. In the meantime, the European Court of Human Rights has issued two judgments ordering the Hungarian state to relocate the family to appropriate conditions in view of their vulnerable situation.
The father was starved
The second time, the request for urgent action by the Strasbourg court was made because the family, although still in the asylum procedure, was transferred to even worse conditions than before in the transit zone: they were placed in the pre-deportation sector, where the father was starved for six days. The starvation lasted until, following a petition by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee, the Strasbourg Court issued a new interim measure ordering the Hungarian state to feed the father.
They were finally released from the transit zone on 19 November 2018, when the Metropolitan Court of Budapest granted their transfer request. They have since found refuge in Germany.
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Source: Telex.hu, helsinki.hu
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