Tech & Rights

The Unbearable Wait of Asylum Seekers in Hungarian Transit Zones

Since September 2015, according to the Hungarian legislation volunteers are strictly prohibited from passing food, water or medicines over the fence to the people who are waiting in transit zones. Watch the video of Volunteers on Rise!

by Hungarian Civil Liberties Union
More and more migrants are trying to apply for asylum status in Hungary since February 2016 – creating a barely manageable situation within the transit zones.

At the Hungarian border town transit zones of Röszke and Tompa, asylum seekers should have the possibility to apply for asylum status, though only up to 30 people are registered daily, and this number is often even much lower. This leads to 100-150 people cueing to apply, while the Hungarian authorities, despite their international obligations, do not provide any food, water or sanitary facilities.

Help gets through

Asylum seekers often have to wait for days in unbearable conditions in the Hungarian transit areas. According to the reporters of Volunteers on Rise, there are children broken apart from their families because they were unable to provide proof of their identity. Underage children are not spared from waiting for a week or more in the transit zones.

Making matters worse, Hungarian NGOs trying to help asylum seekers on the spot are banned by law from giving any aid to these people, though local actor Szeged Migszol, an NGO distributing aid among migrants and asylum seekers, and the UNHCR managed to get around these restrictions and deliver water, food, medicines, and hygienic products to the migrants.

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