Palace claims case, probe vs Duterte on drug war killings are doomed to fail
MANILA, Philippines – The International Criminal Court’s (ICC) cases and investigation against President Rodrigo Duterte over the drug war-related deaths are unlikely to move forward because the Philippines remains steadfast in refusing to cooperate, Malacañang said Thursday.
“Matutulog lang ‘yang kaso na ‘yan dahil in the absence of cooperation, lalung lalo na sa kapulisan, eh walang ebidensya na makakalap,” Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a Palace briefing.
(The case will only languish because in the absence of cooperation, especially from the police, they can’t gather any evidence.)
Roque made the response after the ICC decision to start an investigation into the crimes against humanity cases filed against President Duterte in connection with the drug war killings in the country.
Having lost its membership in the Rome Statute, the Philippines can no longer be adjudicated by the ICC, and the country has no “duty to cooperate,” Roque said.
Malacañang and President Duterte himself had repeatedly said that the Philippines will not cooperate with probes the ICC will launch.
Roque said that without the Philippines cooperating, the ICC prosecution will not have any evidence to build its case.
“Kung titingnan ninyo napakadaming kaso, taon na ang nakalipas, nakabinbin ang preliminary investigation kasi wala nga silang makalap na ebidensya,” he said.
(As you can see, many cases have been pending because evidence cannot be gathered.)
The request for authorization to investigate the case against Duterte was filed last June 14 by Fatou Bensouda, who was then the ICC chief prosecutor.
The probe will cover crimes committed from Nov. 1, 2011, to March 16, 2019.
According to the ICC, it still has jurisdiction over the alleged crimes because they took place from Nov. 1, 2011, to March 16, 2019 — when the Philippines was still a signatory of the statute.
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