Locsin, who replaced Alan Peter Cayetano, said US President Donald Trump withdrew from the United Nations Human Rights Council without the concurrence of the Senate.
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Teddyboy Locsin: 'Duterte can withdraw from ICC without Senate nod'
Helen Flores, Paolo Romero (The Philippine Star) - October 20, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — President Duterte can unilaterally withdraw from the Rome Treaty, which established the International Criminal Court (ICC), even without the approval of the Senate, the country’s new top diplomat said.

“I am never wrong but it seems a president can withdraw from a treaty body without Senate ratification,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. said in a Twitter post Thursday night.

Locsin, who replaced Alan Peter Cayetano, said US President Donald Trump withdrew from the United Nations Human Rights Council without the concurrence of the Senate.

“Trump withdrew from UN Human Rights Council. No Senate vote needed,” he said.

Earlier, Locsin said it is pointless for the country to stay with the ICC since no major offensive power is currently a member. Prior to his appointment as DFA secretary, Locsin was the country’s permanent representative to the United Nations in New York.

He said aggression is a crime that ICC might pick up but only if it is aggression by an ICC member.

“No serious offensive power today – US, China and Russia – is a member of ICC – so doubly pointless to stay. And ICC picks and chooses: those who ICC thinks are easy prey to prove its usefulness,” he wrote on his Twitter account.

Aggression is one of the crimes that the ICC can prosecute, the others being genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Locsin was the one who delivered the letter informing the UN of the Philippine decision to withdraw from the Rome Statute.

Lawyer Rita Linda Jimeno, one of the candidates for the position of associate justice of the Supreme Court, said yesterday the President could invoke the doctrine of rebus sic stantibus in withdrawing from a treaty.

Jimeno said the international law doctrine allows the withdrawal from a treaty if a fundamental change of circumstance renders it inapplicable.

For senators, the issue of whether the Philippines can disengage from the ICC without Senate concurrence is for the Supreme Court (SC) to resolve.

Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said the need for Senate concurrence in the withdrawal from the ICC “will ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court.” 

DONALD TRUMP INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT TEODORO LOCSIN JR.
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