The bible of Philippine politics

Lagot na! Trillanes to submit Duterte ‘admission’ on EJKs to ICC

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POLITIKO - The bible of Philippine Politics

By Xave Gregorio

Opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV is planning to submit a video and the transcript of President Rodrigo Duterte’s apparent admission of guilt to orchestrating extrajudicial killings in the country before the International Criminal Court (ICC), which has began a preliminary investigation into alleged crimes against humanity committed during the course of the administration’s brutal drug war.

“Simula kagabi, pimakuha na namin, pina-transcribe na namin, pina-download na namin ‘yung video at isa-submit namin ito as soon as ma-prepare na namin ‘yung documents,” Trillanes said Friday (September 28) in a media briefing.

“Ito po ‘yung latest na idadagdag namin, hopefully this would be the clincher kasi pinadali niya ang lahat,” he added.

Duterte, in a speech Thursday (September 27), said in Tagalog that his “only sin are extrajudicial killings,” but insisted that there is no evidence which would link him to the deaths of over 4,000 drug personalities who were slain in legitimate police operations.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque has brushed this off, saying Duterte was “not serious.”

But Trillanes said this excuse would not fly before the ICC.

“They cannot get away with that alibi anymore kasi 390,000 Filipinos na ang namatay at hindi ‘yan biro. Pakisabi kay Mr. Roque. Marami ang ebidensiya rito na umaapaw,” Trillanes said.

Official government statistics pegs the number of deaths in the drug war at above 4,000, but this does not include more than 20,000 “deaths under investigation” which accounts for drug suspects killed outside of legitimate police operations.

Trillanes, along with abogado Jude Joshue Sabio and Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano submitted two communications before the ICC in 2017 urging the tribunal to “commit” Duterte and other officials to a trial in connection with the rampant killings in line with the government’s drug war.

This triggered a preliminary investigation into alleged crimes against humanity allegedly committed in the drug war.

Following this, Duterte decided to withdraw the Philippines from the Rome Statute, the treaty which established the ICC, removing the country from the international tribunal’s jurisdiction.

However, Duterte’s withdrawal does not affect the ongoing probe against him as Article 127 of the Rome Statute requires state parties which withdraw from the treaty to cooperate in investigations initiated before they opted out.

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