International Criminal Court - exit YES / NO

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ICCTHE Philippines said on Friday it had given official notice to exit the treaty that created the International Criminal Court, which is examining President Rodrigo Duterte’s deadly drug war. The move comes days after Duterte announced his nation would quit the court over its preliminary inquiry launched last month into allegations his crackdown on illegal drugs amounts to crimes against humanity. Police say they have killed roughly 4,000 suspects who fought back during arrest, but rights groups say the actual number is three times higher and accuse the authorities of murder. However, the president of the member states of the ICC said Friday he regretted Manila leaving the tribunal, warning it would have a “negative impact” on punishing crimes. “I regret this development. A state party withdrawing from the Rome Statute would negatively impact our collective efforts towards fighting impunity,” said President O-Gon Kwon, speaking from The Hague, after the Philippines officially gave notice that it was leaving the court ...............

Warning up, lights out vs total Boracay shutdown

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Beach BoracayA total closure of Boracay could cripple the tourism industry and devastate locals who depend on beach-loving tourists for their livelihood, Sen. Joel Villanueva warned on Friday, a day after three Cabinet members recommended a yearlong shutdown of the island. In a statement, the senator warned of dire consequences if the government went ahead with the advice of Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu, acting Interior Secretary Eduardo Año and Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo to close down Boracay, widely considered the jewel of Philippine tourism ....................

New BI Deputy Commissioner

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Atty. Tobias JavierA former hearing officer of the Bureau of Immigration (BI) has been appointed by President Duterte as Deputy Commissioner of the Agency.

"Lawyer J. Tobias Javier took over the post of Deputy Commissioner Estanislao Canta, a career Bureau of Immigration official who was temporarily appointed to the position by the Department of Justice last year following the ouster of two B.I. Deputy Commissioners implicated in a P50-million bribery scandal.

“We are honored to welcome Mr. Javier to our BI family. Given his vast experience in the practice of law in both the government and private sectors, his competence and capability to perform and excel in his new job cannot be questioned,”

BI Commissioner Jaime Morente said. "Morente noted that Javier is not new in the bureau, having been one of its hearing officers during the time of then Commissioner Andrea Domingo, now chair of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation.

​Javier finished his law course at the Ateneo de Manila University in 1994, passing the bar exams in the same year. ​He worked as a corporate lawyer for several firms and engaged in private practice before joining the BI in 2001. ​He was a former provincial board member of Antique.