The Protector of Citizens determined that the Bogovađa Asylum Center and the Inter-Municipal Social Welfare Center for the municipalities of Ljig, Lajkovac and Mionica did not take appropriate measures regarding the physical violence of security workers against minor migrants who were accommodated in the center in Bogovađa and requested the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Serbia to ascertain all the circumstances of this incident.
Acting upon his own initiative, the Protector of Citizens identified numerous omissions in the work of these two centers and requested that they immediately inform the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Serbia about the entire case.
Investigation of controlling work legality and regularity of the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration, the Bogovađa Asylum Center and the Inter-Municipal Social Welfare Center for the municipalities of Ljig, Lajkovac and Mionica was initiated by the Protector of Citizens after the Group for Children and Youth "Indigo" informed him that on 11 May 2020, an unaccompanied minor migrant accommodated in the Bogovađa Asylum Center had addressed them claiming that unaccompanied minor migrants accommodated in this center had suffered physical violence by members of the security.
He submitted to the "Indigo" Group recordings and photographs of violence and injuries, which this association forwarded to the Protector of Citizens. The recordings and photographs, as stated by this group, were taken on the night of 10/11 May 2020, in the period from 9.05 pm to 3.25 am.
In the recommendations that the Protector of Citizens issued to the bodies whose work was controlled, it is stated, among other things, that it is necessary for the Bogovađa Asylum Center and the Inter-Municipal Social Welfare Center for the municipalities of Ljig, Lajkovac and Mionica immediately inform the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Serbia about the facts and circumstances related to the physical abuse of unaccompanied minor migrants by the security officers of the Bogovađa Asylum Center on the night 10/11 May 2020.
The Ministry of Interior, according to the Protector of Citizens, should determine whether the allegations that the police officers on the night 10/11 May 2020 intervened in Bogovađa Asylum Center to ensure maintaining peace in sleeping areas, whether police officers were aware that violence against underage migrants by security workers had occurred that night and whether they took any measures and activities in that regard.
The Protector of Citizens’ recommendation reads that the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration should develop appropriate guidelines on how the centers’ managers should act in cases of suspicion of violence against and ill-treatment of unaccompanied underage migrants.
The Protector of Citizens believes that acting upon the given recommendations can improve the work of the Commissariat for Refugees, Migration, and the centers within it, and he issued certain recommendations aimed at improving competencies and establishing additional work rules.