Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has said that he may follow in the footsteps of Russia and pull his country out of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Duterte labelled the tribunal as "useless" and expressed anger over the criticism his war on drugs has received from the West.
"They are useless, those in the international criminal [court]. They [Russia] withdrew. I might follow. Why? Only the small ones like us are battered," he said on Thursday (17 November) before leaving for Peru to attend an Asia-Pacific summit.
Speaking about the reasons behind Russia's withdrawal from the international tribunal, he said, "What could be the reason? I really would not know. Maybe to protect what they are doing in Syria, the incessant bombing and the killing of civilians."
Duterte had criticised the ICC in October after a prosecutor of the tribunal said that it may have the jurisdiction to prosecute the perpetrators of the killings in the Philippines. Manila became a member of the Hague-based tribunal in 2011.
The 71-year-old also took aim at US's foreign policies and blamed the UN for its failure to stop wars all over the world. He stressed that he would be the first to join a new world order if China and Russia established one. "You know, if China and Russia would decide to create a new order, I will be the first to join." Criticising the US he said: "The killings are endless. The amount is splattering. That is our lesson. Just because it is America, it does not mean that it is good."
On Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an executive order and removed the signature of Russia from the founding statute of the ICC.