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UN: Colombia Abuses Continue, Now Against Human Rights Defenders

Its no surprise to us here, but in case you needed yet another reminder that mainstream institutions like the United Nations are confirming that Human Rights atrocities are ongoing in Colombia, you get one here today.

Here's Margaret Sekaggya appearing on Democracy Now (go to 9:30 min):

Sekaggya builds on the proclamations made in June by her colleague Phillip Alston. As quoted by Reuters Times, Alston condemned the Colombian military's pattern of slaughtering of innocent civilians, then later dressing them up to look like enemy combatants (known as extrajudicial executions or false positives).  He called it "cold-blooded, premeditated murder of innocent civilians for profit."

So when the Uribe government, itself linked to paramilitary death squads, send dozens of hearts sculptures to DC to whitewash these facts about Colombia, is THIS what they're trying to cover up, the expanding harassment, persecution and violence against Human Rights defenders? Maybe its the fact that violence against unionists persists with at least 29 unionists assassinated to date in 2009? Or maybe the murders and displacement of thousands of Indigenous- and Afro- Colombians each year?

Regardless, Uribe and his corporate backed death squad buddies seem to think that if they sweep enough truth under enough rugs, they can con Congress into enacting more NAFTA-type trade policies. With over 120 House members demanding reform via the TRADE Act, the Colombian Embassy should consider buying stock in broom companies.

Or, they could take actual measures to end violence and impunity, and renegotiate the FTA to ensure it does no further harm to the very populations they've been repressing and exploiting all these years. Now, that would be change we can believe in!

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