3,600 signatures for petition to restore Rome Statute

Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine in 2014, killing all 298 people on board. (Reuters pic)

PETALING JAYA: More than 3,600 signatures have been obtained for an online petition urging the federal government to ratify the Rome Statute as it had planned earlier.

The petition organisers, a group of student activists, said Malaysia could help bring justice to the 298 victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 by being a member of the International Criminal Court set up by the Rome Statute.

Malaysia announced accession to the Rome Statute earlier this month but withdrew on Friday.

On Sunday, the nine student activists published images of what they said was a biased and misleading memorandum to the Malay Rulers by four academicians which the activists said had led to the government’s withdrawal from the treaty.

The activists who released the images were Asheeq Ali Sethi Alivi, Ainina Sofia Adnan, Nurhuda Ramli, Suhail Wan Azahar, Ahmad Taqiyuddin Shahriman, Wong Yan Ke, Chong Kar Yan, Nik Azura Nik Nasron and Siti Nurizzah Mohd Tazali.

They said they had released the document to encourage a debate about the Rome Statute and in support of their petition to the federal government to proceed with ratification of the treaty.

The petition was started on Saturday and a target of 5,000 signatures has been set.

The petition said Malaysia was unable to take the MH17 tragedy to the International Criminal Court, not having ratified the Rome Statute.

An international investigation into the downing of MH17 has concluded that a Russian-made missile had brought down the airliner over southern Ukraine while it was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.

The Rome Statute set up the International Criminal Court to allow prosecution of those responsible for international crimes as genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and crimes of aggression.

On Friday Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said there had been an attempt to create confusion over the Rome Statute.

The petition is at:
https://www.change.org/p/tun-dr-mahathir-bin-mohamad-statut-rom-keadilan-untuk-mangsa-mh-17