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There is no excuse for delay in ratification of ICC treaty October 12, 2004

Posted by s511 in Uncategorized.
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Today I reiterate my call on the government to immediately transmit the Rome Statute Establishing the International Criminal Court to the Senate for its ratification.

It is such a sad footnote to our continuing struggle for the realization and protection of human rights that the Rome Statute continues to languish at the Security Cluster of the Cabinet. Apparently the government is hesitant to pass it on to the Senate because it knows the United States is aggressively campaigning against the ICC and for protection to its military troops.

But the truth is, more than half the world’s population is now enjoying protection from the most heinous of crimes under international law, such as genocide, crimes against humanity and other war crimes under the ICC. In this court, we exact accountability not from states, but individuals who are found guilty of violating human rights.

The ICC becomes relevant for the Philippines when it is considered as a measure by which the country can help promote human rights among the community of the world’s nations. Peace is the underlying principle that we seek to achieve with the ICC. It would be wise for our foreign policy decision-makers to follow in the lead towards justice and peace, especially in a world of increasing violence and conflicts.

As Chair of the House Committee on Civil, Political and Human Rights we will continue to actively involve ourselves with the ICC struggle, and spearhead efforts at the country-level to have the Rome Statute ratified by the Philippine government.

We will continue our work in the House of Representatives and the Senate to solicit wider support from our colleagues to support the ICC towards our common aspiration of never seeing the likes of another Rwandan murder spree, or another Yugoslavian genocide. At the same time, the ICC can serve as a refuge for peoples with no recourse left at the local courts for redress of grievous offenses such as crimes against humanity, which are perpetrated against a distinct sector or class of people in a systematic manner.

The abuses committed at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, is an example. Which explains why the US is bent on blocking the ICC, and makes it clear why the government is lukewarm towards the ICC, since it is still awaiting from signals from the US.

Rep. Loretta Ann P. Rosales
AKBAYAN Party-List
Chairperson, House of Representatives Committee on Civil, Political and Human Rights