Duterte warns ICC probers they will be arrested if they continue probing war on drugs
President Rodrigo Duterte warned the International Criminal Court (ICC) that they will be arrested if they continue to conduct a preliminary investigation on the government's anti-illegal drug campaign.
During his speech at the Davao airport on Friday, Duterte threatened to arrest ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda if she goes to the Philippines to conduct a probe.
"So you, Ms. Fatou, don't come here because I will bar you. Not because I am afraid of you, I said, because you will never have jurisdiction over my person, not in a million years," he said.
He added she can't exercise any proceeding without basis since the Philippines is not a member of the treaty.
On May 2017, Filipino lawyer Noel Sabio asked the ICC to charge Duterte with mass murder and crimes against humanity over the country's war on drugs. The ICC begun preliminary investigation on this case in February 2018. A month later, Duterte announced the Philippines is pulling out of the ICC.
Duterte claimed that the Rome Statue was not enforceable in the country since it was not published in the government's Official Gazette.
"There is no basis at all because we were never?the Philippines was not ever, ever a member of that ICC for the reason that there was no publication," he said.
"But what is your authority now? If we are not members of the treaty, why are you in this country? You cannot exercise any proceedings here without basis. That is illegal and I will arrest you," he added.
Duterte said he is not afraid of their investigation but added the criminal court can't call him because their position is flawed.
“It cannot be corrected anymore. So stop your nonsense,” he said.
The Philippines has formally informed the United Nations of its withdrawal from the Rome Statute, creating the International Criminal Court, as it cited the efforts of some groups to "politicize and weaponize human rights.
Duterte even said he will convince other countries to withdraw their membership in the Rome Statue. Ella Dionisio/DMS