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article imageOutrage over Hungarian camerawoman who kicked fleeing migrants

By AFP     Sep 9, 2015 in World

Footage of a Hungarian camerawoman shown tripping and kicking migrants as they fled police near Hungary's border has sparked global outrage.

A "Wall of Shame" page on Facebook featuring pictures, videos and commentaries linked to the incident involving journalist Petra Laszlo had gathered nearly 16,000 likes by Wednesday afternoon.

"You are a disgrace to your profession," one user wrote.

Two small Hungarian opposition parties filed a criminal complaint against Laszlo shortly after the footage began circulating on social media late on Tuesday. It was not immediately clear whether police would launch a probe.

The incident occurred as hundreds of migrants broke through a police line at a collection point close to the Serbian border where thousands have been crossing each day for the past month.

Refugees accompanied by police officers walk on the railway tracks near Szeged town on the Hungarian...
Refugees accompanied by police officers walk on the railway tracks near Szeged town on the Hungarian-Serbian border on September 8, 2015
Attila Kisbenedek, AFP

Laszlo was caught on film as she appeared to deliberately trip a man sprinting with a child in his arms, and kick another running child near the border town of Roszke.

It later emerged that the camerawoman, who was fired over the incident, had worked for N1TV, an Internet-based TV station close to Hungary's far-right Jobbik party.

"These are shocking images. You're part of a news agency. With your hand you're shooting and with your leg you're hurting someone else," said Aniko Bakonyi of human rights group Hungarian Helsinki Committee.

The video showed Laszlo was "only kicking foreigners, no-one else, including a child who was clearly an asylum-seeker," Bakonyi added.

"Since she's been working as a cameraperson there, she clearly knew who she was kicking. It wasn't by accident, there is no mistake in that."

In an earlier statement, N1TV said it had fired Laszlo "with immediate effect" because she had "behaved in an unacceptable way."

"We consider the matter closed," the statement read.

Laszlo herself has not yet reacted publicly to the storm.

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