ICC’s hypocrisy, bias

Former president Rodrigo Duterte will refuse to submit to the jurisdiction of hypocritical foreign bodies meddling in local affairs, such as the International Criminal Court (ICC). This was the gist of the position to be taken by his lawyers in fending off the threatened arrest order from the international tribunal.

Harry Roque, international law expert and former spokesperson of Mr. Duterte, said that counsels of the president, whom he will lead in engaging the ICC, plan to seek an injunction order from a local court to halt the advance of international probers or actions taken against the former president in the probe of the war on drugs.

The ICC, which is desperately in need of polishing its international profile due to allegations that it is good only in running after small nations while keeping clear of military powers who are the frequent source of “crimes against humanity,” is launching a determined campaign against the Philippines.

“Under no circumstance will he allow a foreign prosecutor, any foreign judge or court to exercise jurisdiction over him,” Roque said.

Mr. Duterte’s detractors, led by coup specialist Antonio Trillanes IV, filed the “crimes against humanity” complaint using a manufactured figure of 30,000 extrajudicial killings (EJK) in the war on drugs.

ICC, then through Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, immediately launched a preliminary examination into the war on drugs and the officials who were then behind it, led by Mr. Duterte.

Bensouda, even before Trillanes filed his partisan complaint, had shown an unusual interest in the Philippines’ case.

A few months into the Duterte administration, Bensouda issued a statement warning Mr. Duterte, who is being faulted for his obnoxious language then, that the crackdown on drugs may constitute “crimes against humanity.” Later on, this was the exact allegation his foes slapped against the then president and his officials.

Bensouda expressed her concern about the “alleged killings” and that “public statements of high officials of the Republic of the Philippines seem to condone such killings.”

That was also the period when rights experts of the United Nations, particularly Special Rapporteur Agnes Callamard, had made known their desire to visit the country to look into the anti-narcotics campaign.

The filing of the ICC case was justified by a trumped up move to supposedly illustrate that prosecuting Duterte in the Philippines will not get off the ground.

An impeachment complaint was filed by yellow stooge Sen. Antonio Trillanes’ acolyte Magdalo Representative Gary Alejano which, stupid as it is, was expectedly junked sometime in early 2017.

It was, however, used as the destabilizers’ showcase to the ICC that Mr. Duterte was shielded from accountability, and thus the need for the international tribunal to step in.

A legal expert said the Magdalo impeachment case was a “building block” to the eventual ICC petition.

It was exactly as was advertised after the ICC rammed through the “crimes against humanity” probe into the war on drugs despite the call of Philippine officials to respect the principle of complementarity.

The fully functioning judicial system makes the ICC probe nothing more than meddling into domestic affairs.

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