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Hungary detains refugees in container camps

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Hungary’s parliament has passed a law that automatically detains asylum seekers at Hungary’s borders in camps made from converted shipping containers. According to Prime Minister Viktor Orban, the law was issued as a reaction to the recent terror attacks in Europe carried out by migrants. Orban described migrants as “a Trojan horse for terrorism” and defended the law saying that migrants didn’t want to integrate into Christian and European culture and way of life while stubbornly insisting on keeping their own culture. For this reason, he considers migrants a risk for Hungary and European culture.

Asylum seekers and migrants trying to enter the country will be held in these container camps for the duration it takes to process their application. The time limit for detaining migrants used to be four weeks but now migrants can be held for an indefinite time. The government made it clear, however, that migrants are free to go at any point as long as they withdraw their asylum claim and agree to return to either Serbia or Croatia. Those who are denied entry may have to pay for the detention costs.

The passing of this legislation has caused widespread outrage amongst human rights groups such as Amnesty International which point out that this law would breach international and European law. Seeing that this law makes the situation for people who have already suffered a great deal more difficult, it could also affect the physical and mental wellbeing of women and children in particular.

Hungary also announced they will continue the construction of a second electrical fence in along the Serbian-Hungarian border and make use of CCTV and other technology in order to prevent illegals migrants from entering the country.

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Jenny Bui

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