Caritas PH urges Marcos admin to allow ICC probe on drug war

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The Caritas Philippines called on the government to allow the International Criminal Court (ICC) to resume its investigation on the anti-narcotics drive during the tenure of former President Rodrigo Duterte.

The ICC investigation will "allow due process to run its course and ensure justice and truth will prevail,” said Caritas Philippines Executive Director Fr. Antonio Labiao, Jr. in a statement.

“The Senate and the House of Representatives should exert pressure and issue a resolution addressed to President Marcos allowing the ICC to resume its investigation," he said.

"If the government has nothing to hide then it has nothing to fear,” he added.

Labiao also added that the ICC probe is a "step in the right direction to promote transparency, fairness, and trust in public institutions."

To note, Caritas Philippines is the humanitarian and advocacy arm of the Catholic Church in the country.

Last Jan. 26, the ICC announced that it has approved its prosecutor’s request “to resume investigation into the Situation of the Republic of the Philippines.”

“Following a careful analysis of the materials provided by the Philippines, the Chamber is not satisfied that the Philippines is undertaking relevant investigations that would warrant a deferral of the Court’s investigations on the basis of the complementarity principle,” the ICC said.

“After having examined the submissions and materials of the Philippines Government, and of the ICC Prosecutor, as well as the victims’ observations, the Chamber concluded that the various domestic initiatives and proceedings, assessed collectively, do not amount to tangible, concrete and progressive investigative steps in a way that would sufficiently mirror the Court’s investigation,” it added.

In September 2021, the ICC announced that it was opening an investigation into the alleged crimes that happened during the anti-narcotics campaign under the Duterte administration.

The ICC temporarily suspended its investigation in November 2021 following the request of the Philippine government. "The Prosecution has temporarily suspended its investigative activities while it assesses the scope and effect of the deferral request," ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan said in a statement dated Nov. 18, 2021.