Marcos: No decision yet on rejoining ICC




The Manila Times


PRESIDENT Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. has yet to make a decision regarding calls for the Philippine government to rejoin the International Criminal Court (ICC), Press Secretary Rose Beatrix “Trixie” Cruz-Angeles said Monday following calls made by some opposition members, including Sen. Ana Theresia “Risa” Hontiveros and former lawmaker Leila de Lima, for the Chief Executive to restore the country’s membership in the tribunal to prove his administration’s resolve in protecting human rights. “Those comments, as in any comment in the exercise of free speech, [are] duly noted. But we will wait for the formal policy as articulated by the President,”the Presidential Communications Operations Office chief said. The Philippines officially withdrew from the Rome Statute on March 17, 2019, exactly one year after former president Rodrigo Duterte threatened a pull out due to the ICC’s initiation of a probe on alleged crimes against humanity committed by his administration. Those abuses, according to the international tribunal, were in connection to Duterte’s unforgiving war against illegal drugs that resulted in the deaths of thousands during law enforcement operations. Duterte rejected the ICC’s move, insisting it has no jurisdiction over the country’s internal affairs. Marcos is also being urged to put under review his predecessor’s antinarcotics policy. The Manananggol Laban sa Extrajudicial Killings (Manlaban sa EJK), a group of lawyers, judges, legal practitioners and law students, wants the 64-year-old leader to further study the Duterte administration’s campaign against illegal drugs including the accountability of senior political leaders and law enforcement officials. “We will have to articulate that later on when we have a directive from the President,” Cruz-Angeles said.