LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Malta and the State of the Vatican held official talks in Rome during an official visit by the Maltese Foreign Minister Ian Borg. Both sides discussed the set up of a Joint Commission which will discuss the management of property owned by State of the Vatican in Malta.
During an audience with Minister Borg in the Vatican, Pope Francis declared that his visit to Malta reminded him of the kindness of the Maltese people. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that during the audience with His Holiness, Minister Ian Borg saidthat Malta is always honored by the visit of His Holiness to Malta. They also discussed the ongoing bilateral work between the two states, as well as the ongoing work by the Maltese government in preparation for the United Nations Security Council with Malta continuing to be an agent of peace and stability around the world.
During this visit to the Vatican state, Minister Borg also met with the Secretary of State of the Vatican, His Eminence Cardinal Pietro Parolin and Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher. The long relationship between the two states and the importance of Catholicism in Malta were also discussed. Both sides also discussed the issue of migration in the Mediterranean, the situation in Libya and the conflict between Ukraine and Russia were also on the agenda.
– photo Department of Information – Malta –
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Malta and Libya are exploring further cooperayion in the energy sector, particularly in renewable energy. Minister for Foreign Affairs Ian Borg and Minister for Environment and Energy Miriam Dalli returned Malta from Libya following bilateral talks with the Libyan government last Sunday.
The Maltese governement said that meetings were held in Tripoli with the Minister for Foreign Affairs Najla El Mangoush, with the Minister for Oil and Gas Mohammed Oun and with the Minister for the Environment Ibrahim Munir Al-Arabi.
Maltese Minister for Environment and Energy declared Maltàs commitment to contiue investing in the diversification of its energy sources while Maltese Foreign Minister described the visit to Libya as “a solid demonstartion of Maltàs committment to continue consolidating and improving the relationship with Libya”.
Both sides discussed matters of common interest including migration, the latest political developments in Libya, the need for democratic elections in Libya and Maltàs term on the United Nations Security Council.
– photo Department of Information (Malta) –
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela described Malta as a pioneer within the European Union as the Maltese government is committed to include an anti-SLAPP into Maltese law, besides harsher penalties for crimes against journalists.
Abela made the declaration during a meeting with Teresa Ribeiro, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europès representative on media freedom. He added that following the recommendations made by a Committee of Experts on the Media Sector, three draft laws that increase protection for journalists were presented in Parliament. Abela emphasised that his government is committed to ulterior consultation and will remain committed to reforms as it believes freedom of expression and the mediàs role are important in a democratic society.
Following the assassination of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia five years ago and the recommendations by the Daphne Caruana Galizia Public Inquiry, the Maltese government came under increased pressure both locally and internationally to implement a number of reforms to strengthen the institutional framework, good governance and even the media sector.
Teresa Ribeiro thanked the Maltese Prime Minister and his Government for the open dialogue with the OSCE, while noted the work done and which is continuing in favour of strengthening the freedom and important functions of the media.
– photo Department of Information –
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS) – Serie A giants Inter will be in Malta for a training camp between December 5 and 9. The visit is being supported by VisitMalta, as part of its campaign to promote Malta as a Mediterranean tourist destination.
The Italian Serie A is set of a two-month break due to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
The last preparations are currently underway so that all the necessary facilities will be provided for the Nerazzurri.
During this training camp Inter will play two friendly matches, with a game against the Maltese Premier League club Hamrun Spartans and a possibility of another game against an international team.
– foto Image –
LA VALLETTA (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Devis Mangia has resigned as coach of the Maltese national football team with immediate effect. This was confirmed by the Malta Football Association.
In an official statement, Mangia described his resignation as “painful” while denying any wrongdoing. “I would like to reiterate unequivocally, that not only have I not behaved in a manner that offends the dignity of any person sexual or otherwise, but nor has there been any allegation by MFA of any sexual abuse or harassment in my regard.”
Mangia was suspended by the Malta Football Association last September following the alleged sexual harassment of at least two national team footballers.
While declaring that he has submitted himself to the full scrutiny of the safeguarding process, Mangia added that he will continue to do so. In his letter of resignation Mangia said that his decision was taken in the best interest of the national team to serenely face the football challenges which lie ahead.
Meanwhile, the Executive Board of the Malta’s Football Association confirmed that a report has already been concluded, following an investigation which took almost a month. The report will now be assessed by the association’s Safeguarding Board.
In October, the Malta Football Association filed a police report after two unnamed football players from the Maltese national team came forward alleging unwanted sexual advances by Mangia. The Italian coach has denied any wrongdoing.
A former coach of Italy’s Under-21 football team, Mangia has been Malta’s head coach since December 2019, winning 9 of his 27 matches in charge.
-foto Image –
VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Maltese customs officials have found 610 packets of cocaine weighing 1 kilogram each with an estimated value of 100.6 million. The consignment have been found in a banana shipment on Sunday.
The container was selected by the Customs Monitoring Unit following meticulous risk assessment on containers transiting through the Malta Freeport.
The unit was scanned along with a number of other containers when officers flagged discrepancies in the image of that particular unit.
The Police Drug Squad inspected 20 boxes of bananas containing 20 packets of cocaine each whilst another ten boxes were found to contain 21 packets each.
So far this year, the Maltese Customs have seized 800 kilograms, 1,494 kilograms and 610 kilograms of cocaine in three separate operations.
Over the past three years, the Maltese Customs have seized 750 kilograms of cocaine in 13 separate seizures in 2019, 612 kilograms of cocaine in an operation in 2020, and 740 kilograms in an operation in 2021.
According to a statement by the Maltese Customs, the banana shipment had left Guayaquil in Ecuador and was en-route to Batumi, Georgia. Guayaquil, Ecuador’s second largest city and its main port, has become a hub for drug traffickers exporting tons of cocaine to Europe and the United States.
But amid increasing police checks and seizures, criminal gangs are getting creative by hiding tons of the drug inside food containers, cereal boxes, scrap metal, tea bottles and even in fake fruit like bananas and pineapples.
So far in 2022, Ecuadorian anti-narcotics police have seized 112 tons of drugs across the country, half of which were seized in Guayaquil – where over 85% of Ecuador’s non-oil export cargo is moved.
– photo Dogana Malta –
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – The international NGO Alarm Phone declared that around 1,350 migrants are in distress in Malta and Italy’s search and rescue zone.
In a tweet, the NGO said that “people in danger reported that 12 people have died or are unconscious and many suffer from dehydration. Both boats could sink at any moment”.
Alarm Phone added “we spoke to persons on the boats who are scared of drowning. We alerted authorities over 15 hours ago, why have rescue operations not yet taken place?!”.
All migrants fled from Libya on two wooden boats and it is being reported that the boats engines stopped working. The NGO urged the Maltese and the Italian authorities to embark on a rescue operation to save the two groups of migrants; 700 and 650 respectively.
According to the International Office for Migration, at least 1,269 people have drowned or went missing so far this year while crossing the Central Mediterranean to reach Europe.
Last week, the Maltese government was once again accused of violating maritime and international law by giving orders to a merchant ship to take 23 migrants to Egypt rather than to closer ports in Europe. Alarm Phone, Mediterranea Saving Humans, Mèdecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and Sea-Watch accused Malta “with blatant violations of maritime and international law” and demanded “an end to these serious human rights violations in the central Mediterranean”.
credit photo agenziafotogramma.it
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Malta will be receiving a total of around 1.08 billion in funds from the European Union over a period of six years. The funds were approved by the European Commission. Various national investments in the socio-economic sectors of the island will be financed through three different funds; the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), Cohesion Fund (CF) and Just Transition Fund (JTF) for the financial period from 2021 to 2027. The Maltese government had identified crucial sectors including research and innovation, digitalisation, business growth, energy and the environment, transportation, education and health, tourism, and Gozo, with investments aimed at protecting Gozòs environment and identity while promoting socioeconomic development and accessibility to counteract additional challenges posed by double insularity.
Economy and European Funds Minister Silvio Schembri, said: “these funds will be used to enable the government to carry out a number of projects and investments in a bid to continue to increase socio-economic development in our country. As a result of EU funding support, over the years we have witnessed important projects being implemented in various sectors, from infrastructure to education and health. We will also be utilising these funds to implement important projects that will further strengthen Maltàs economy”. Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds Chris Bonett welcomed the adoption of the programme by the European Commission and declared Maltàs commitment to implement a successfully the new programme. He added “whilst Malta will continue to build on the various actions which are currently being implemented under the current programme, the new programme will serve as a renewed impetus for investments in line with national ambitions”.
VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – The fifth anniversary of the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia was commemorated by a series of events that ended with thousands of activists attended the monthly Vigil for Truth and Justice, held in Valletta. Throughout the event, activists held a large banner hailing Daphne as a Maltese hero.
This year’s anniversary came two days after brothers George, 58 and Alfred Degiorgio, 56 were jailed for 40 years each after pleading guilty to their involvement in the murder.
The President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola was the first to address the vigil. She declared that Daphne Caruana Galiziàs weapon was journalism as a means of power to reveal corruption. While adding that Daphne was always led by the principle “of doing what is right”, she appealed to those present to be inspired by what have already achieved. “There is still a lot for us to work on to ensure truth and justice,” Metsola said.
The President of NGO Repubblika Robert Aquilina declared that the civil society will continue to fight in order “to ensure justice for the corruption she revealed and for what Daphne Caruana Galizia was killed for”.
Maria Falcone, sister of Judge Giovanni Falcone, killed by the mafia in the May 23, 1992 attack in Capaci, had been invited by the NGO Repubblika to partecipate in the commemorations for the fifth anniversary of the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia. While she highlighted that her native Sicily has suffered immensely under the mafia, she urged the crowd to not just realise what a horrific evil the mafia was, but also “the even greater evil that lies in the ties between the mafia and politics.” She quoted one of her brother’s famous quotes – that one should do their duty whatever cost and sacrifice it entailed, because therein lies the essence of human dignity – as she insisted that both her brother and Daphne had exemplified this spirit.
Early in the afteroon a silent gathering was held at Bidnija at the site where investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, 53, was assassinated in a car bomb. Hundreds of activists joined the European Parliament President Roberta Metsola and anti-mafia activist Maria Falcone.
During a morning political activity, Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela said that Malta must learn from the dark chapter that led to the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia. While addressing Labour supporters in ?a?-?ebbu?, Abela added “Daphne Caruana Galiziàs homicide was among the darkest chapters of this country’s history, and we would be wrong if we think we can forget or erase that moment from Maltàs past.” Earlier last week, Abela said he would not be attending any of the Daphne Caruana Galizia memorial events over the weekend.
Nationalist Party and Opposition leader Bernard Grech while addressing a political activity in Mosta, insisted that the Maltese government had yet to learn any lessons from the “traumatic” assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia and is still determined to silence its critics, including journalists.
During a morning event, international press organisations and NGOs gathered outside Caruana Galiziàs residence to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the journalist’s murder. They declared that the lack of implementation of the recommendations made by the Public Inquiry into Daphne Caruana Galiziàs assassination is “unacceptable”.
Meanwhile, in a mass marking the fifth anniversary of the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia, Archbishop Charles Scicluna appealed to the public to make sure that any murder could not be dismissed as “business as usual” – as George Degiorgio, one of her murderers had said in an interview he gave to a Reuters journalist. The mass was celebrated at the Holy Family Church in Bidnija, where Daphne had lived and where she was killed.
– photo Agenziafotogramma.it –
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Maltàs Labour government and the Nationalist Opposition are insisting on the need that truth and full justice must prevail following yesterday’s unexpected turn in court during the trial of the Degiorgio brothers as half way through the first day of their trial, they pleaded guilty to their involvement in the murder of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia. George and Alfred Degiorgio were sentenced to 40 years in prison each. Caruana Galizia was killed in a car bomb on 16 October 2017. After the judge walked out from the courtroom, George Degiorgio turned round on Caruana Galiziàs family asking: may I address you? While he got a firm no, he said “all I wanted to do is apologise.” Then, his brother, Alfred Degiorgio stood up and stressed that they wanted to apologise, and added whoever wants to know, we can tell the truth from beginning to end.
Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela described the 40-year prison sentence as “an important step forward, to deliver justice in a case that represents a dark chapter in Maltàs history.” In a statement, Robert Abela added, “there are now three individuals found guilty of this homicide who have been condemned to imprisonment. Another three individuals are awaiting trial.” While reiterating the government’s commitment to deliver full justice to the Caruana Galizia family, and to the Maltese people, Abela expressed his appreciation to all the authorities “who have already worked hard and who will continue to work on this case.” The Maltese Premier declared that the government will continue to support the authorities as they carry out their duties and will continue implementing important reforms to strengthen further the rule of law principles and democracy in Malta.
Opposition leader Bernard Grech said developments in court on Friday were another step towards justice for Daphne Caruana Galizia. “We have to continue striving for truth and justice to prevail,” said Grech, adding that only this can help heal the nation.
Speaking outside the court on Friday evening, the son of Daphne Caruana Galizia, Matthew said “I’m relieved that they have been convicted and sentenced. Now it’s about the remaining cases,” in reference to the impending trials of alleged mastermind Yorgen Fenech and the two men who allegedly provided the bomb that killed his mother.
Anti-corruption NGO Repubblika said that the admission by two men of their involvement in the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia is only a small step towards full justice.