The State Department on September 15, 2011, certified that Colombia had met the human rights conditions attached to U.S. assistance. No surprise there—the State Department always certifies Colombia meets the conditions, no matter what is happening on the ground. To be fair, this time, with the year-old Santos Administration, there’s somewhat more reason to certify than during countless rounds of certification during the Uribe Administration. The certification document cites the Santos Administration's successful passage of a victims' reparations and land restitution bill; a “disarming of words” initiative in which it abandoned the inflammatory anti-NGO language used by Uribe and his top officials, which had endangered human rights defenders and journalists; progress on some historic human rights cases; and a variety of directives and policy initiatives, at least on paper, to support human rights and labor rights.
But the 118- page document contains a wealth of information that shows why we should still be deeply concerned.