Del Rosario & Morales complaint against China junked, for lack of jurisdiction

Del Rosario & Morales complaint against China junked, for lack of jurisdiction




The communication filed by former Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Albert del Rosario and former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales alleging in their complaint that Chinese President Xi Jinping and other Chinese officials have committed crimes against humanity over Beijing's encroachment activities in the South China Sea, before the International Criminal Court (ICC)  has been dismissed for lack of jurisdiction of the later.
In the report, "the crimes allegedly committed do not fall within the territorial or otherwise personal jurisdiction" of the ICC, ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said.


The complaint/communication stemmed from when Morales and Del Rosario along with some Filipino fishermen accused Xi and some Chinese officials as accountable for crimes against humanity over China's activities within the Philippines' exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in the South China Sea and for depriving Filipino fishermen of food and livelihood.
Former Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Albert del Rosario and former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales (photo credit to owner)

They also alleged that the Asian giant, engaged in massive illegal reclamation and artificial island-building in the Spratly Islands as well as tolerated illegal and harmful fishing practices by Chinese nationals in the area, which they claimed not only violated the law of the sea but gave rise to crimes against humanity.
The report which was dated December 5, stated that "China is not a State Party to the Rome Statute. Accordingly, the ICC lacks personal jurisdiction".
The international court also pointed that it may exercise territorial jurisdiction over the alleged crimes to the extent that they were committed in Philippine territory from November 1, 2011 until March 16, 2019 or before Manila's withdrawal from the ICC took effect on March 17.

However, it argued that the alleged conduct "occurred in areas that are outside of the Philippines’ territorial sea" or areas farther than 12 nautical miles from its coast, but nonetheless within areas that may be considered to fall within its declared EEZ.
"The Office has concluded that a State’s EEZ (and continental shelf) cannot be considered to comprise part of its ‘territory’ for the purpose of article 12(2)(a) of the Statute," the ICC Prosecutor said, explaining that the "territory" referred to includes those areas under the sovereignty of the State, namely its landmass, internal waters, territorial sea, and the airspace above such areas.
"Finally, as previously highlighted, the remaining basis for the exercise jurisdiction (active personality) under article 12(2)(b) is also not met, given the Chinese nationality of the alleged perpetrators in question," the ICC Prosecutor said.

"Accordingly, the Office concluded that the crimes allegedly committed do not fall within the territorial or otherwise personal jurisdiction of the Court," it added.





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Report from PNA

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