Duterte announces PH withdrawal from ICC

Duterte announces PH withdrawal from ICC

Philippines withdraws from the United Nations treaty that created the  International Criminal Court (ICC).

Just today President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has decided to withdraw the Philippines’ ratification of the Rome Statute effective immediately.

Last month International Criminal Court special prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, announced that she was initiating a preliminary examination into allegations of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines to see if these fall into the ICC’s  jurisdiction and if a full-blown investigation is needed.  *
International Criminal Court (photo credit to owner)

Since then the President have lambasted multiple times several United Nations officials and reiterated that the ICC would not have jurisdiction over his person.

The Rome Statute is the international Treaty that established the International Criminal Court and was adopted in 1998. The Philippines ratified the treaty in 2011.

Chief legal counsel Salvador Panelo in a statement said Duterte is is withdrawing the Philippines’ ratification of the Rome Statute “effective immediately.”

The Philippines withdrawal from the ratification of the Rome statute will be treated as, that the ICC will no longer have jurisdiction over the Philippines.

The President argued that it is “not effective nor enforceable” in the country because it is “devoid” of the requirement that it should be published in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.

“The effectivity of the Rome Statute which is sixty days after the submission by a signatory state of its ratification to the [United Nations] Secretary General as provided thereto cannot prevail over our law,” Duterte said.

“An international law cannot supplant, prevail or diminish a domestic law.”

The Rome statute was ratified and endorsed during the Benigno Aquino III administration in August 2011, it was signed by the Philippines December 28, 2000. *

In the prepared statement, President Duterte lashed out UN special rapporteur Agnes Callamard and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein for “readily” showing “international bias” with their remarks against the him.

“It is apparent that the ICC is being utilized as a political tool against the Philippines,” Duterte said.

“Given that the ICC shows a propensity for failing to give due respect to the State Parties of the Rome Statute and that there is clear bias on the part of the UN against the Philippines, the Philippines may very well consider withdrawing from the Rome Statute.”


Duterte added that the Philippines signed the statute “on the assumption that the internationally accepted principles of justice in relation to our Constitutional requirement on due process will be upheld.”

The President also said the one-year period before the withdrawal becomes effective, as stated in the statute, should not apply to the Philippines’ case since “there appears to be fraud in entering such an agreement.”

“The Philippines, in ratifying the Rome Statute, was made to believe that the principle of complementarity shall be observed; that the principle of due process and the presumption of innocence as mandated by our Constitution and the Rome Statute shall prevail; and that the legal requirement of publication to make the Rome Statute enforceable shall be maintained,” Duterte said.  *

The ICC is the institution that has power to exercise jurisdiction over persons for the most serious crimes of international concerns such as the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and crimes of aggression, and is seen to help end impunity for the perpetrators of these crimes.

The United States of America, Russia , China , Israel, Libya, Iraq, Qatar, and Yemen are not members of the International Criminal Court (ICC),

 Report from ABS CBN


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