THE INTERNATIONAL Criminal Court (ICC) has asked victims of President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s deadly war on drugs to come forward by filling out an online form on its website.
The court provides an online form that victims can fill out to inform it of their experiences in connection with the Philippines’ anti-illegal drug campaign.
Victims may also download the form and e-mail it to the international tribunal. The forms are available on the ICC’s website at www.icc-cpi.int/.
The court said the form, which is in English, would be translated into local languages and would be made available to the public soon.
The international court said the submission is “voluntary and free of charge.”
It added that submission of the form “is not an application process for participation in court proceedings against an accused person or for obtaining reparations before the ICC.” The deadline for submission is on Aug. 13.
On June 14, ICC Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda asked the Hague-based tribunal’s pre-trial chamber to allow her office to probe the killings committed in the Philippines from Nov. 1, 2011 to March 16, 2019 in connection with Mr. Duterte’s drug war. She said her office found sufficient evidence that local police had committed human rights violations by executing drug suspects who allegedly resisted arrest.
On June 22, Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra said “the cooperation of the victims’ families and their witnesses is crucial” as it would be easier for investigating agencies to build up cases against erring law enforcers if the victims come forward and testify.
“Nothing prevents the families of victims and their witnesses from filing their complaints directly with the DoJ (Department of Justice) or the OMB (Office of the Ombudsman),” he added.
He also said his agency would provide witness protection, if necessary.”
The DoJ is reviewing 52 case records of drug-related deaths from police and 107 cases from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency. — Bianca Angelica D.Añago