Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has dismissed threats by Western countries to indict him in the International Criminal Court (ICC) for his crackdown on drugs.
“You scare me that you will jail me? International Criminal Court? Bullsh*t,” said Duterte said during a Monday speech.
According to official police figures, during Duterte’s drug crackdown, which began when he took office in June, over 2,500 have been killed.
Last month, the ICC announced that it may have jurisdiction to prosecute those implicated in the killings.
ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said that her office was currently investigating instances of state officials “ordering, requesting, encouraging or contributing” to crimes related to the crackdown.
Duterte claimed that the US is responsible for the ICC wishing to jail him, noting that Washington itself is not even part of the court.
“America itself is threatening to jail me in the International Criminal Court. It is not a signatory of that body. Why? Because at that time, they were afraid [former President George W.] Bush would face it,” he said.
Since coming to power, Duterte has been ridiculing the United States, European Union, and United Nations over their concerns that extrajudicial killings may be taking place during his crackdown.
Noting that lawyers in Europe were “rotten” and “stupid,” and had a “brain like a pea,” he stressed that there was nothing wrong with killing bad elements.
“I will never allow my country to be thrown to the dogs…I said, when I was a mayor, ‘If you destroy my city with drugs I will kill you,’” he added.”Simple as that… When was it a crime to say, ‘I will kill you,’ in protecting my country?”