The Tindouf camps, a black spot for the recruitment of child soldiers


Experts and human rights activists denounced, Thursday in Geneva, the scourge of the recruitment of children in armed conflicts around the world, describing the camps of Tindouf, in the southwest of Algeria, a black mark for this practice, which constitutes a serious violation of international humanitarian law.

Participants in the conference organized by the NGO Independent Human Rights Forum-Africa, on the sidelines of the 55th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC), called for resolute international action to end to the recruitment of children, which violates the child’s right to a normal and safe civic education.

The president of the International Center for Research on the Prevention of Child Soldiers, Abdelkader Filali, spoke of an international market of supply and demand where children are exchanged like goods and sent to zones of armed conflict, specifying that the Tindouf camps are part of the “list of shame” including several centers of child exploitation and recruitment.

Polisario elements tear children from the family fold when they are between eight and nine years old, to place them in quasi-military schools separating them from their family and social environment, while imbuing them with violent ideologies, a- he clarified, noting that this causes constant problems in the personal development of children.

Mr. Filali supported his remarks with a series of journalistic investigations and independent testimonies which evoke the hell of violations of children’s rights, thus painting the picture of a geopolitical space outside international standards and charters of human rights.

He therefore called for the adoption of an action program by the international community to eradicate the scourge of child soldiers by 2040.

For his part, the Spanish human rights activist, Pedro Ignacio Altamirano focused on the general situation in the Tindouf camps, where the fragility of the children’s conditions is only one aspect of its overall deterioration.

The destitution of vital public services, the misappropriation of humanitarian aid and the climate of widespread repression against various segments of the population create a sinister environment in which children are deprived of the most fundamental rights guaranteed by international instruments , he lamented.

Mr. Altamirano also addressed the problem of people detained in the Tindouf camps, denouncing the obstinacy of the host country, Algeria, in not allowing the population census and in blocking the return of populations to their regions of origin. origin in the Moroccan Sahara.

For her part, human rights activist Kajmoula Boussif focused on the situation of women with regard to the rights set out in human rights charters, particularly in the fight against all forms of mistreatment, violence and sexual exploitation.

During this conference, moderated by Moulay Lahcen Naji, president of the Independent Human Rights Network in Geneva, she noted that the time has come to bring to justice the perpetrators of flagrant violations of international humanitarian law in the Tindouf camps. , believing that this case constitutes a real test for the effectiveness of justice in the international order.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button