Bato Dela Rosa sees PH-ICC ‘deadlock’ on EJKs probe
MANILA, Philippines— It’s a “deadlock” between the Philippines and the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) Prosecutor Office.
Senator Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa declared this on Wednesday after ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan rejected the Philippines’ bid to stop the resumption of the tribunal’s probe on alleged extrajudicial killings (EJKs) committed during the time of then President Rodrigo Duterte.
“Wala ako nakikita dyan, walang patutunguhan yan. Anong patutunguhan nyan. Sige nga, there’s a deadlock kumbaga strategic stalemate,” Dela Rosa said in an interview at the Senate.
(It’s going nowhere. There’s a deadlock, it’s like a strategic stalemate.)
“Paano sila mag pursue, pano sila magpapatuloy sa kanilang gustong gawin? Ano ang magiging basehan nila? How can they conduct an impartial and true investigation kung hindi sila makapasok dito? So ano ang magiging basis nila sa kanilang pag prosecute ng kaso…?
(How can they pursue with the investigation? What would be their basis? How can they conduct an impartial and true investigation if they can’t come here? So what will be their basis to prosecute the case)
As then head of the Philippine National Police, Dela Rosa led the government’s brutal war on illegal drugs that allegedly resulted in the deaths of thousands of people.
But the former top cop insisted that no crimes against humanity were committed in the country, contrary to the complaint filed before the ICC against him, Duterte and other officials involved in the implementation of the government’s war on drugs.
Dela Rosa also rebuffed Khan for pushing to resume the ICC probe.
“Ano siya hilo? Bakit siya mag insist di ba? Kayo mismo tanungin ko, you are witnessed to what is happening in this country, meron ba tayong crimes against humanity na nangyayari dito? Wala naman.”
(Is he crazy? Why is he insisting? I ask you, you are witnessed to what is happening in this country, are there crimes against humanity happening here?)
“Bakit siya nag-iinsist? He is not a part of the Philippine government, he is not part of the Philippine jurisdiction, bakit sya nag iinsist na na makialam sa problema natin dito?” he further said.
(Why is he insisting? He is not a part of the Philippine government, he is not part of the Philippine jurisdiction, why does he want to be part of our problem here)
Dela Rosa reiterated the government’s position that anyone, including those from ICC, can enter the Philippines as tourists but not to investigate.
“Kung papasok sila dito tapos mag-insist sa kanilang investigation, the government has all the right to do what it takes to protect our sovereignty. Ang sovereignty kasama na yan sa sovereignty natin yung protektahan yung ating sariling interest di ba?” he said.
(If they will come here and then insist to investigate, the government has all the right to do what it takes to protect our sovereignty. Part of our sovereignty is to protect our own interest)
Pressed if allowing ICC entry is not option just to prove the EJKs allegation is not true, the senator said in jest: “Gusto mo talaga ako ipakulong. Huwag mo na ako ipasok sa kulungan. Gusto mo talaga ako ikulong.”
(Do you really want me to be jailed? Don’t send me to prison. You really want me in jail)
“Ayaw na nga ng gobyerno natin, bakit ka pa maghanap ng option di ba? That’s the option that our government is taking,” he stressed.
(Our government doesn’t want it, why do you have to look for an option? That’s the option that our government is taking)
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