Philippines formally withdraws from International Criminal Court

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a statement in Manila in Nov. 2017. Duterte will withdraw the Philippines from the Rome Statute the treaty that established the International Criminal Court, according to a statement released to reporte

The ICC has urged the Philippines to reconsider its decision, since it is one of the few Asian countries that have ratified the Rome Statute, while human rights organisations said a withdrawal from the ICC does not exonerate Duterte from his alleged crimes.

ICC prosecutors have yet to comment on the announcement.

The ICC can investigate and prosecute these crimes in a country when local authorities do not.

They allege that Duterte's drug war represented a systematic, state-sanctioned act of violence against a specific group, namely suspected drug dealers and users, in violation of due process, basic principles of human rights and worldwide humanitarian law.

As one of the original signatories and framers of the United Nations Human Rights Charter, the Philippines has long stood as a bastion of human rights and democracy in Asia.

Quitting the court requires a year's notice and experts say pulling out does not preclude an investigation of the killings, which have drawn worldwide concern.

They said Duterte's decision was an admission of guilt and a sign that he was panicking.

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte is not happy with the International Criminal Court and has fiercely defended the drug war as a battle to bring safety to the nation's 100 million people.

Mr Duterte's spokesman, Harry Roque, said on Thursday the ICC examination into the killing of drug suspects "violates the very fundamental basis by which we gave our consent to be bound by the ICC", referring to a principle of complementarity.

Duterte had initially dared the ICC to indict him, saying he was willing to rot in jail to save Filipinos from drugs, which he says are destroying his country.

The ICC's initial review of the alleged human rights violations linked to the Philippines' fight against illegal drugs was based on the communications lodged by lawyer Jude Sabio, and opposition lawmakers Senator Antonio Trillanes IV and Gary Alejano. The panel of prosecutors is blaming the police who, they said, were not able to gather the evidence to merit the filing of a case.

In a statement, the global court noted Manila's intention to withdraw based on news reports but emphasized that it has yet to be notified by the United Nations Secretary-General, the depositary of the Rome Statute.

He also claimed that the drug-related killings under his administration were not genocide, war crimes, or crimes against humanity, but a result of legitimate police operations.

"To prove that it's not a way of evading or getting away from consequences or the jurisdiction of ICC ... even if we withdraw, our actions back when we're a member are still covered", he said as quoted by the state-run Philippine News Agency. "Detaching from the Rome Statute is abandoning a global bastion for the protection of human rights", Lagman said.

Alejano noted that Article 127 of the Rome Statute states that a state party may withdraw membership by written notification addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the withdrawal shall only take effect a year after receipt of the notification.

Lagman expressed fear that the worldwide community will lose trust in the Philippines "because a country which does not honor its commitments does not deserve the trust of other states".

Related news:

Hot News

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Tyrann Mathieu: Cardinals cut safety after he denied a pay cut
Mar 16, 2018 - 05:08
It'll be intriguing to see the interest in Pouncey, as just like the Dolphins as a team, he's been up-and-down in recent years. Despite the injury, the Cardinals rewarded him with a five-year, $62.5 million contract, with $15.5 million guaranteed.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Spotify will go public on April 3
Mar 16, 2018 - 05:02
Executives also said they want any investor-rather than a curated group-to have the chance to buy shares on the first day. The streaming music market in the country is dominated by players like Apple Music, Google Play, Deezer and Simfy Africa.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Claire Foy paid less than co-star on 'The Crown'
Mar 15, 2018 - 06:15
Wahlberg donated his 1.5m dollar (£1.1m) pay cheque to Time's Up for the work to scrub the disgraced Kevin Spacey from the film. A producer of the hit Netflix drama says Matt Smith , who played the queen's husband, made more than actress Claire Foy .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Trump fires Tillerson, secretary of state, a day after visit to Nigeria
Mar 15, 2018 - 06:06
Lawmakers from both major parties have criticised those cuts and the administration's failure to fill dozens of open jobs there. For months it has been perceived that Tillerson, who is younger than Trump but appears older, has been unhappy in his position.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Kawhi Leonard will not play against Pelicans, return still up in air
Mar 15, 2018 - 06:01
Popovich would later say that he'd never encountered an injury like Leonard's during a career stretching back to the early 1970s. The San Antonio Spurs are a team that has really struggled to make their mark in this season.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top County Health Rankings report released Wednesday morning
Mar 15, 2018 - 05:56
Racine was No. 61 and 62 for health outcomes and factors , respectively, while Kenosha came in at No. 59 and 66. The obesity rate is 32 percent, and 28 percent of the population is physically inactive.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Broncos going after former UH quarterback Case Keenum
Mar 15, 2018 - 05:53
But in the case of many others, Keenum may be the consolation prize to Kirk Cousins, the top free agent on the market. We didn't play very well there a year ago , and that's not all on the players.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Google Bans Ads for Crypto-Currencies, Related Financial Services
Mar 15, 2018 - 05:48
Cryptocurrencies are known to be notoriously volatile, so some governments are working to clamp down on the digital money. CFDs , binary options and spread betting are all legitimate financial products but are highly risky.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top ABC Is Terrible at Music Shows
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:39
They are in New York City and 17-year-old Catie Turner of Langhorne, Pennsylvania starts the show off with a bubbly personality. Ron , a 21-year-old entrepreneur originally from Congo who now resides in Plano, TX, sang "Let It Go" by James Bay .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Tusk threat to 'freeze' Brexit talks until Irish get deal
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:38
That's pushed the European Union to consider a traditional free trade association as the best option available to both sides. Britain's vast financial sector would be the worst-hit industry.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top This NJ teen phenom's 'American Idol' epic audition earned a standing ovation
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:36
And Monday, she was finally standing before Perry at her NY audition, as the pop superstar joked about Mara's age. Katy declared he could be "top 10", and called him "the best male singer we've seen so far".

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Himes: 'Enormous Mistake' For House Republicans To End Russia Probe
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:36
West Texas Congressman Mike Conaway notes there may have been some bad judgments or inappropriate meetings, but no collusion. The committee's Democrats will receive the report Tuesday for review.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top 5 things to know about today's special election in western Pennsylvania
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:35
Privately, some Republican insiders say if the party had picked Reschenthaler, Lamb would have had no shot at winning. Saccone, meanwhile, has come under fire from some national Republicans for lackluster campaigning and fundraising.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Pence calls for Joy Behar to apologize to Christians
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:34
I'm a faithful person, but I don't know that I want my vice president, um - speaking in tongues and having Jesus speak to him", she said.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Isaiah Thomas and LeBron hug it out
Mar 14, 2018 - 00:33
The Lakers will have to wait until summer to find out whether they earned a callback - or maybe even got the part. Dwight Powell led the Mavericks with 20 points, one short of his career high, on 9-of-11 shooting.