President Rodrigo Duterte (left photo) delivers a speech during the 120th founding anniversary of the Department of Justice at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on Sept. 26, 2017. International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda (right photo) has been hailed by The Guardian as the "woman who hunts tyrants." She is seen in this February 2013 photo.
PPD/Ace Morandante and Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung/Stephan Röhl
As probe begins, Duterte says he wants to grill ICC prosecutor
Alexis Romero ( - February 13, 2018 - 4:40pm
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte wants to cross examine International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda if she decides to pursue a case against him in connection with his bloody campaign against illegal drugs. 
Duterte, a former prosecutor, said Bensouda would realize that "she is doing it wrong" if he is allowed to ask her questions before the International Court of Justice. 
"I'm waiting. Tingnan ko kung gaano siya... (I'll see how good she is) A few questions, ‘yan kaming dalawa lang (just the two of us). If she decides to file a case... I will cross-examine her there in the International Court of Justice," Duterte said during a meeting with local government officials in Cebu City Monday night.  
"She (Bensouda) will find out that she's doing it wrong," he added.
The ICC is about to start its preliminary examination on the killings tied to Duterte's anti-illegal drugs campaign, which has earned criticism for allegedly encouraging human rights violations. 
The court acted on a communication sent by Jude Sabio, lawyer of Edgar Matobato, who previously claimed to be a hit man of a death squad formed by Duterte when he was still mayor of Davao City. Sabio has accused Duterte of ordering the killing of about 1,400 people in Davao City and 7,000 others who were accused of having links with narcotics syndicates. 
The opposition welcomed the ICC announcement, saying the preliminary examination is a step closer to attaining justice for victims of extrajudicial killings. But Malacañang belittled the development, believing the complaint against Duterte would fail because the crackdown against illegal drugs do not constitute a crime against humanity. 
Duterte has said he is ready to face a death sentence for launching a campaign against the drug menace, which he claimed, has contaminated four million Filipinos. 
The president reiterated that he would not stop his controversial war on illegal drugs until he steps down from the presidency. 
"I told the police and the military, 'work on it.' I take full responsibility of the consequences of the drug campaign...whether intended or not. It will be my sole, singular responsibility, and I will answer alone," the President said. 
"If I do not move, let's be frank, 40 percent of the total barangays in the Philippines are contaminated with shabu. They're about 9,000 barangay captains into drugs. How can I control? I will run out of time," he added. 
Duterte said he is ready to face the consequences of his actions, which he claimed, were intended to preserve the country and its youth,  
"If I die, I don't mind. I am old. I have completed all of my dreams. All my dreams, all the accolades, all the applause, I'm done with all of them. I do not need it really," he added.

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