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Duterte reiterates stand on ICC drug war probe: I want to protect children, future

President Rodrigo Duterte reiterated his stand on the International Criminal Court's (ICC)'s investigation of alleged crimes against humanity committed during his administration's drug war, saying that his campaign was implemented “to protect the children and their future.”

“As long as I am a worker of the government I will do everything to protect my country, that's my explanation. I will not allow myself to be judged by white people in another place outside of my country,” said Duterte in his speech during the opening of the Siargao Island Sports and Tourism Complex on Saturday.

Duterte also maintained that he would only face a Philippine court with a Filipino judge, and if convicted, would choose to be imprisoned in Muntinlupa.

“If I go to prison I go to Muntinlupa, if I have a trial I should be tried by a Filipino judge in a Philippine tribunal and I should be prosecuted by a Filipino prosecutor. Sabihin na panahon na para magpunta na sa Muntinlupa, eh 'di yan ang swerte mo. Sige but ito everything I did it for my country (when it is time to go to Muntinlupa that's my luck. Go ahead, but I did it for my country),” he said.

He underscored that he did not benefit from his drug war campaign but instead it was for the future of the Filipino youth.

“Hindi ako nakinabang dyan, wala akong satisfaction dyan, hindi ako nagkaroon ng pera na singkong sentimos dyan. I did it because I want to protect your children and their future,” Duterte said.

(I did not benefit from that, I did not have satisfaction there, I did not gain money from there. I did it because I want to protect your children and their future.)

“Hindi akin kayong lahat ng taong Pilipino ang nakinabang dyan, ginawa ko lang ang trabaho ko kasi nga ayaw ko masira yung bayan ko that is the long and short of the story of the ICC, kalokohan yan,” he added.

(All Filipinos benefited from that, I just did my job because I do not want to ruin my town that is the long and short of the story of the ICC, that's nonsense.)

Last September, the ICC said it found reasonable grounds to investigate the Philippines' war on drugs for alleged crimes against humanity.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque earlier responded that the Duterte administration would never cooperate because the country was no longer a member of the ICC.

Retired ICC judge Raul Pangalangan, however, said that the Rome Statute was clear that the ICC retains jurisdiction even after a state's withdrawal.

The Supreme Court also said that the Philippines was obliged to comply with the investigation. — DVM, GMA News