China backs Philippines' withdrawal from ICC

Patricia Lourdes Viray - Philstar.com
China backs Philippines' withdrawal from ICC

"We have said before that since he took office, President Rodrigo Duterte has firmly cracked down on drug-related crimes and improved public security, which creates the sound environment for the Philippines' economic development and its people's peaceful life and wins full approval and wide support at home," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said.

FMPRC / Released

MANILA, Philippines — Following Manila's withdrawal from the Rome Statute, Beijing maintained its position that the International Criminal Court should respect the sovereignty of nations.

Earlier this month, the Philippines submitted its letter of withdrawal from the international treaty that established the ICC.

The Philippine government said that the decision to pull out from the international court was a "principled stand against those who politicize and weaponize human rights."

The Chinese Foreign Ministry maintained that the ICC should "act cautiously and avoid being used as a political tool."

"China believes that a sovereign country has the right to say no to political manipulation under the cloak of law," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said in a news briefing Wednesday.

Beijing defended President Rodrigo Duterte's crackdown against illegal drugs and stressed that the campaign has improved public security in the Philippines.

Duterte's so-called war on drugs has created a "sound environment" for the Philippines' economic development, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said.

"The international community should give more understanding and support to those efforts instead of pointing fingers and casting blames," Lu said.

Despite withdrawing from the ICC, Manila assured the international community that it will remain resolute in upholding human rights.

"The Government remains resolute in effecting its principal responsibility to ensure the long-term safety of the nation in order to promote inclusive national development and secure a decent and dignified life for all," the Philippines said in its letter of withdrawal.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano maintained that there is no crime or liability linked to the Duterte administration's campaign against illegal drugs.

"Contrary to what some parties are trying to make it appear, there is no failure on the part of the Philippine Government in dealing with issues, problems, and concerns arising from this campaign. These are dealt with by independent and well-functioning organs and agencies of our State," Cayetano said.

The Philippines' withdrawal from the ICC will be effective one year after the date of receipt of the notification.

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