Friday, September 28, 2018

Trillanes threatens to submit Duterte ‘admission’ on EJKs to ICC, also calls on to expedite probe



Sen. Antonio Trillanes / file photo from Philstar



Manila, Philippines – Senator Antonio Trillanes IV in a press briefing on Friday said that he is planning to submit a video and the transcript of President Rodrigo Duterte’s supposed admission of guilt to orchestrating extrajudicial killings before the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The international tribunal has reportedly begun its preliminary investigation into the alleged human rights violation of the Duterte administration in the country.


“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

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

The opposition senator also called on the ICC to expedite its investigation on the charges filed against Duterte, following the remarks that his only sin was the EJK.

“That admission will be taken seriously by the International Criminal Court. So in this same vein, I would like to take this opportunity to call on the ICC to expedite the investigation of the crimes against humanity committed by Mr. Duterte against the Filipino people,” Trillanes said

He said that Malacañang cannot hide behind the defense that the President was only joking when he made the comment.

“Those remarks uttered in unguarded moments, ‘yun ‘yung mga  bits of truth na lumalabas dito kay Duterte. Madalas itong nagsisinungaling pero ‘yung mga ganyang unguarded moments d’yan lumalabas ‘yung kanyang saloobin,” Trillanes said

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, on the other hand, brushed it off saying that the president “was not serious.” But Trillanes said this excuse won’t do anymore.*

“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,” he said.

President Duterte, however, said that there was no evidence to involve him in the said EJK issue.
The chief executive has already declared the country’s withdrawal from the ICC around March with an assurance to the United Nations that Philippines will continue to adhere to the rule of law.

“The government affirms its commitment to fight against impunity for atrocity crimes, notwithstanding its withdrawal from the Rome Statute, especially since the Philippines has a national legislation punishing atrocity crimes,” the government said in a letter addressed to the UN in March.

However, the coalition group from the opposition has asked the Supreme Court (SC) to declare void from the beginning the country's withdrawal from the Hague-based tribunal (or ICC).

The Philippine Coalition for the ICC has petitioned the SC to declare the president’s withdraw as “void ab initio.”

In the said petition, the group argued Duterte gravely abused his discretion and violated the constitutional system of checks and balances by unilaterally deciding to withdraw the Philippines' membership from the ICC, whose establishing treaty was ratified by the Senate in 2011.

Oral argument on this petition was reset on October 9, according to reports.


Source: Politics, MSN, Reuters