ICC should keep out of PH’s internal issues—Malacañang
MANILA, Philippines —After the Supreme Court (SC) dismissed petitions challenging the Philippines’ withdrawal from the international criminal Court (ICC), Malacañang urged ICC to stop “wasting time and resources” in probing matters of the country.
The SC rejected the petitions for being “moot and academic.”
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque welcomed SC’s decision as he insisted that the Philippines does not recognize the ICC’s jurisdiction over the country.
“We welcome the latest Supreme Court decision dismissing the petition which questioned the President’s unilateral withdrawal from the International Criminal Court,” Roque said in a statement.
“Having said this, we call on the ICC not to waste time and resources on investigations that will not prosper as we do not recognize ICC jurisdiction over the Philippines, as well as in the face of uncontroverted proof that domestic legal and judicial processes are functioning normally in our country,” he added.
Chief presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo, in a separate statement, also urged ICC officials to stop attempts to “meddle in the country’s internal affairs.”
“The decision puts to rest the debate on the authority of the President to withdraw from treaties and international agreements,” Panelo said in a statement.
Echoing the SC decision, Panelo noted that the President has such prerogative as the primary architect of the country’s foreign policy.
“As the President said, the ICC has no jurisdiction over the Philippines, nor any of its state officials, given that the Rome Statute was not published in accordance with the demands of due process and the right to information,” Panelo said.
“We, therefore, reiterate our calls to the officials of the ICC to stop their futile endeavors apropos the internal affairs of our country.”
“It is about time for foreign elements not to meddle in the affairs of our state and unchain their imperialist assault on our sovereignty, even as the citizens of this country assert our independence against external forces that seek to trample upon our fundamental sovereign rights institutions,” he went on.
In February 2018, the ICC launched a preliminary examination on President Rodrigo Duterte’s alleged human rights violations due to his bloody campaign against illegal drugs.
A month after, Duterte declared that the Philippines was withdrawing from the ICC.
Despite this move, the ICC has said it will keep an eye on the alleged crimes against humanity under the Duterte administration.
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