Recruiting child soldiers in Yemen

In Yemen, families send their children to so-called summer camps. There, adolescents are given combat training and taught why they should fight for God. Both government forces and Houthi rebels use child soldiers.

During the camp training sessions, Houthi insurgents explain their yearslong fight against the official Yemeni government from their perspective. Additionally, religious teachers had imparted the ideology behind what they saw as a holy mission, or jihad, and talked about why they were fighting to protect their homeland

The Houthis deliberately used the education system to incite violence and indoctrinate students with the group’s ideologies. Houthi militias likely run around 6,000 of the so-called summer camps, where this kind of indoctrination takes place. Each camp accommodates at least 100 children at a time. The juveniles are given combat training and often sent to the frontlines.



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