The noose is tightening around the Polisario and their mentor Algeria in their scheme to use international fora as a platform to spread anti-Moroccan propaganda. The decision by Russian embassy in Algiers to deny the Polisario delegation visas to take part in the World Festival of Youth and Students (Oct 14-22) has dealt a heavy blow to the Tindouf-based separatists.
Nearly one hundred participants saw their visa applications rejected at a moment Algeria prepared a military aircraft to transport them to Sochi.
The decision raised question marks in Algeria, which offers its passports as well as financial and diplomatic backing to Polisario propaganda globally.
The World Festival of Youth and Students has for long been used by separatists and their proponents as a venue to spread anti-Moroccan propaganda. The previous editions were marred by incidents of violence against the Moroccan delegation. In the 2010 edition, which was hosted in South Africa, the Moroccan delegation was attacked by members of the Polisario and their supporters who attempted to abort the organization of a conference on Morocco’s territorial integrity.
The opening ceremony of the World Festival of Youth and Students took place in Sochi, Russia, on Sunday, with President Vladimir Putin saying that the event will gather 30,000 people from 180 countries, making it the most representative in history.
The festival, organized by the World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY) along with the International Union of Students since 1947, is being held in Russia for the third time after being staged in Moscow in 1957 and 1985.