President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. announced on Monday, 1 August that the Philippines will not rejoin the International Criminal Court (ICC) amid the ICC’s investigation into the six-year war on drugs of the administration of former president Rodrigo Duterte.
In a chance interview with reporters at the Pasig Sports Center, Marcos declared that “the Philippines has no intention of rejoining the ICC.”
This decision, he said, was arrived at following his recent meeting with chief presidential legal counsel Juan Ponce Enrile, Solicitor General Menardo Guevarra, Justice Secretary Boying Remulla, Foreign Secretary Enrique Manalo, and lawyer Harry Roque, who served as Duterte’s spokesperson.
“Ang meeting namin ay dahil sinasabi ngayon na itutuloy ang imbestigasyon. Eh sinasabi naman namin, may imbestigasyon naman dito at patuloy rin naman ang imbestigasyon, bakit magkakaroon ng ganoon?”, Marcos told the media.
The Chief Executive said he asked his legal team how the Philippine government will respond to the ICC’s invitation to provide observations on the reopening of the investigation into alleged crimes against humanity committed during the drug war.
“The ICC is a very different kind of a court, kaya sinabi ko sa kanila na pag-aralan ninyo muna ang procedures para tama yung gagawin natin.” (The ICC is a very different kind of court, so I told them to study the procedures first so we can make the right step.)
“Kung sakali na sasagot tayo, ano ang magiging sagot natin? Or possible din hindi natin papansinin dahil hindi naman tayo sumasailalim sa kanila” (If we respond, what will our answer be? Or it’s also possible that we will ignore it since we’re not under their jurisdiction), Marcos said.
The Philippine government officially withdrew from the ICC in March 2019 after the body launched a preliminary examination of the Duterte administration’s campaign against illegal drugs.
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