President Rodrigo Duterte said Wednesday he was pulling the Philippines out of the treaty underpinning the International Criminal Court, which is examining his deadly drug war.
“I therefore declare and forthwith give notice… that the Philippines is withdrawing its ratification of the Rome Statute effective immediately,” Duterte said in a statement.
The Hague-based ICC announced last month it was launching a “preliminary examination” of Duterte’s bloody anti-drug crackdown that has drawn international concern.
Police say they have killed nearly 4,000 drug suspects as part of the campaign, while rights groups claim the toll is around three times the numbers given by authorities.
The outspoken Philippine leader, who is accused of stoking the killings with inflammatory statements, has taken issue over the Philippines becoming the first southeast Asian nation put under a preliminary examination by the ICC prosecutor.