“Vacation in Peace”: Polisario mercenaries’ program to traumatize Saharawi children, human rights defenders sound the alarm

In a controversial development, the Polisario Front’s “Holidays in Peace” program has sparked a wave of criticism from human rights activists. The program aims to send thousands of children from the Tindouf camps to European countries for the summer.

The activists expressed their deep concern over what they described as “grave human rights violations” to which the children participating in the program are exposed. They pointed to the risks of these children being exposed to attempts to obliterate their religious and cultural identity and forcing them to participate in religious rituals that are alien to them.

Amina Laghzal, coordinator of the Saharawi NGO Coalition, said that the region is witnessing intensive missionary activity targeting children in particular. She added that there are organizations operating under the guise of humanitarian aid to implement proselytizing agendas.

Abdelwahab Elkayen, president of Africa Watch, warned that children could be exposed to practices that could lead to them losing their religious and cultural identity. He called on Sahrawi families to exercise caution before sending their children to participate in this program.

The activists called on UN and international committees and mechanisms concerned with children’s rights to intervene to stop this program, stressing the need for Algeria to play its role in protecting Sahrawi children on its territory.

The controversy comes at a time when concerns are growing that the issue of Sahrawi children is being exploited in the ongoing political conflict over the Sahara issue, raising questions about the future of these children and their basic rights.

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