Disturbing video shows refugees being fed 'like animals'

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Small children frantically wave their arms. Adults whistle and shout, clamoring for a desperately needed meal.

Police officers behind hygiene masks toss them sandwiches as if they are feeding animals at the zoo.

Hungarian police are investigating footage of officers throwing bags of sandwiches to fenced-in migrants. The latest troubling indication of Hungary's treatment of people escaping war and depredation through its borders, the video reportedly came from a refugee camp maintained by the Eastern European nation's government in Röszke, near the Serbian border.

"It was inhumane and it really speaks for these people that they didn't fight over the food despite being clearly very hungry," Michaela Spritzendorfer-Ehrenhauser, an Austrian volunteer who secretly filmed the scene with a colleague, told Agence France-Presse.

But Zoltán Kovács, a spokesman for the Hungarian government, had defended the footage. "I can see policemen who have been performing their duties for months, trying to take care of 23,000 migrants arriving continuously day by day while there is no co-operation whatsoever on their part," Kovács wrote in an email obtained by The Telegraph.

Human Rights Watch called the conditions at the two detention centers in Röszke "abysmal" this week, citing overcrowding and a lack of food and medical care.

The United Nations has criticized the country's treatment of asylum seekers, as Hungary has ejected thousands of refugees from its borders. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán ordered construction of a four-meter-high fence along the Serbian border in June and enacted strict laws—coming into effect Sept. 15—that could see migrants jailed for crossing into the country.

Orbán told a German newspaper in an interview published Saturday that migrants—many of whom come from war-torn Syria and Afghanistan—should simply go back "where they came from."

Watch more footage from the scene below:

Migrants Clamour for Food at Roszke Camp
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Disturbing video shows refugees being fed 'like animals'
Refugees and migrants wait to pass from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Thousands of people, including many families with young children, braved torrential downpours to cross Greece’s northern border with Macedonia early Thursday, after Greek authorities managed to register about 17,000 people on the island of Lesbos in the space of a few days, allowing them to continue their journey north into Europe. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)
A refugee wrapped in a thermal blanket looks at a dinghy full of migrants and refugees approach the coast of Lesbos island, Greece, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2015. The head of the European Union's executive says 22 of the member states should be forced to accept another 120,000 people in need of international protection who have come toward the continent at high risk through Greece, Italy and Hungary. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
A girl cries as refugees and migrants try to cross the borders in heavy rainfall from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Thousands of people, including many families with young children, braved torrential downpours to cross Greece’s northern border with Macedonia early Thursday, after Greek authorities managed to register about 17,000 people on the island of Lesbos in the space of a few days, allowing them to continue their journey north into Europe. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)
Migrant people cross the serbian-hungarian border at the railway track near Roszke, southern Hungary in Roszke, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Leaders of the United Nations refugee agency warned Tuesday that Hungary faces a bigger wave of 42,000 asylum seekers in the next 10 days and will need international help to provide shelter on its border. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
Migrants enter Hungary from Serbia at the temporary border fence under construction near the border village of Roszke, 180 kms southeast of Budapest, Hungary, early Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. (Sandor Ujvari/MTI via AP)
Migrants are escorted by Hungarian police officers after they were caught after entering Hungary from Serbia at the temporary border fence under construction near the border village of Roszke, 180 kms southeast of Budapest, Hungary, early Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. (Sandor Ujvari/MTI via AP)
Refugees and migrants walk on the railway tracks in heavy rainfall as they wait to pass from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Thousands of people, including many families with young children, braved torrential downpours to cross Greece’s northern border with Macedonia early Thursday, after Greek authorities managed to register about 17,000 people on the island of Lesbos in the space of a few days, allowing them to continue their journey north into Europe. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)
A young boy looks waves out of a bus window as he leaves a migrant camp for asylum seekers near Roszke, southern Hungary in Roszke, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Leaders of the United Nations refugee agency warned Tuesday that Hungary faces a bigger wave of 42,000 asylum seekers in the next 10 days and will need international help to provide shelter on its border, where newcomers already are complaining bitterly about being left to sleep in frigid fields. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
Macedonian border police helps refugees and migrants to pass in heavy rainfall from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Thousands of people, including many families with young children, braved torrential downpours to cross Greeceís northern border with Macedonia early Thursday, after Greek authorities managed to register about 17,000 people on the island of Lesbos in the space of a few days, allowing them to continue their journey north into Europe. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)
A boy passes from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia as other refugees and migrants wait, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Thousands of people, including many families with young children, braved torrential downpours to cross Greeceís northern border with Macedonia early Thursday, after Greek authorities managed to register about 17,000 people on the island of Lesbos in the space of a few days, allowing them to continue their journey north into Europe. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)
A young boy standing with his mother waits in a queue for a bus that will take them to the center for asylum seekers near Roszke, southern Hungary in Roszke, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Leaders of the United Nations refugee agency warned Tuesday that Hungary faces a bigger wave of 42,000 asylum seekers in the next 10 days and will need international help to provide shelter on its border. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
Migrants wait for a bus in Nickelsdorf, Austria, at the border between Hungary and Austria, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Austrian police say more than 3,000 migrants crossed into Austria overnight at Nickelsdorf, the main border point with Hungary. They say a train carrying up to 500 migrants left for Vienna early Thursday but most remain at Nickelsdorf. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)
Syrian children stand next to their parents at a makeshift camp for asylum seekers in Roszke, southern Hungary, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Leaders of the United Nations refugee agency warned Tuesday that Hungary faces a bigger wave of 42,000 asylum seekers in the next 10 days and will need international help to provide shelter on its border. (AP Photo/Muhammed Muheisen)
A man falls down as he tries to pass from the borders from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Thousands of people, including many families with young children, braved torrential downpours to cross Greeceís northern border with Macedonia early Thursday, after Greek authorities managed to register about 17,000 people on the island of Lesbos in the space of a few days, allowing them to continue their journey north into Europe. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)
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