Press Release
March 17, 2021

On the Supreme Court decision on the petition filed against the Philippine's withdrawal from the Rome Statute

While the Supreme Court dismissed the petition questioning the validity of the Philippine government's withdrawal from the Rome Statute for being moot and academic, the High Court acknowledged the limitations on the power of the President as chief architect of foreign policy.

The petition was filed by me and minority senators Francis Pangilinan, Paolo Benigno Aquino IV, Leila de Lima, Risa Hontiveros, and Antonio Trillanes IV.

In the press statement issued by the Supreme Court: "The decision acknowledged that the President, as primary architect of foreign policy, is subject to the Constitution and existing statutes. Therefore, the power of the President to withdraw unilaterally can be limited by the conditions for concurrence by the Senate or when there is an existing law which authorizes the negotiation of a treaty or international agreement or when there is a statute that implements an existing treaty."

This is a clear recognition of the limitations of the power of the President with respect to foreign policy. Most striking is the acknowledgement that the power of the President to withdraw "unilaterally" can be subject to limitations by the Senate. It is a highly interesting decision and I will await the full text before I comment more extensively.

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