LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Two Italian men were arraigned before court on Friday after they wew arrested in a police anti-drug operation. The police captured 55kg of cannabis with a street value of about 750,000 euro. The Police also arrested another Italian man, 54 in connection with this attempt to smuggle cannabis in Malta. He was waiting for the arrival of the boat. However he is still under police custody for further investigations.
The cannabis was found in different plastic bags hidden in different parts of a boat. The Drug Squad has been keeping surveillance on the movements of a fishing boat for the past weeks.
Members of the Police Drug Squad and Rapid Intervention Unit surrounded the boat and arrested the men as soon as the boat docked at the pier in Marsascala, south of Malta. One of the men on the boat tried to escape by jumping into the sea but was arrested immediately.
The three Italian men have residency permits in Malta. Small amount of cannabis and cocaine were also found during searches at the residences of the Italians.
The police in Malta seized IPTV equipment from an individual following searches made in three different properties belonging to the same person. A judicial warrant was issued to search and seize all illegal equipment and devices following a request by the Italian authorities regarding illegal use of IPTV service in connection to ‘Operation Perfect Storm’.
In Malta, the operation was coordinated by the Financial Crimes Investigation Department and the Cybercrime Unit of the Malta Police Force. The searches were carried out on two premises in Qormi and one in St Paul’s Bay.
During the raid, the police found equipment used for the diffusion of IPTV signal including around 150 devices, together with approximately 48 Smart Satellite Cards, two smartphones and around 13,000 euros in cash. A spokesperson for the Maltese in Malta said that investigations are still ongoing.
On the same day, the Maltese government lauched a programme of mass events in Valletta for the Christmas season, the local health authorities confirmed three elderly persons have died after being found positive for Covid-19. This brings the total of victims up to 81.
The Ministry for Health announced that the 3 deaths in 24 hours; a 79-year old man was confirmed positive on the 1st of November, an 87-year old man and a 75-year old man whowere confirmed positive on the 3rd of November. In the last 24 hours, Malta has registered 153 new coronavirus cases. The number of active cases stands at 2,041 after 89 patients recovered from the virus.
Robert Abela, the Maltese Prime Minister has ruled out any form of lockdown. Opinion polls show a majority of Maltese are against a lockdown. “At this time, we want to keep the Christmas spirit alive while continuing to help and support the local industry. We believe that this balance can be achieved through an ongoing economic activity even when it comes to Christmas shopping, while people keep following the necessary precautions,” said Minister Julia Farrugia Portelli.
However, the Medical Association of Malta, MAM, has condemned the attitude of Prime Minister Robert Abela and of Tourism Minister Julia Farrugia Portelli, saying they are deliberately ignoring scientific advice in the thick of a pandemic. “COVID-19 will not kill Christmas but will kill more vulnerable Maltese people,” said the Association.
The Medical Association of Malta noted the increase of serious illness and deaths from COVID-19. Further to the three deaths confirmed in the last 24 hours, there are 80 very seriously ill patients at Mater Dei Hospital with coronavirus, excluding the 3 smaller hospitals, 12 of which are in intensive care.
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela declared that a total lockdown is not in the government’s plans to combat COVID-19. Malta is experiencing an increase in daily deaths and in new cases related to coronavirus.
Malta has registered eight deaths since last Wednesday; five cases were confirmed on Thursday and another two early Friday morning. So far, a total of 73 deaths were confirmed while 1,929 cases are still active. The Maltese health authorities registered 6,764 cases since the start of the pandemic in March.
Local medical associations declared that further restrictive measures should be reintroduced to fight the increase in new positive cases. The health services in Malta are facing a crises, and the medical associations representing various health professions said that “the situation in local hospitals will only get worse if such restrictions are not in place and enforced.”
In a joint statement, the thirteen medical associatons said that the Maltese government should avoid scenes such as those witnessed in Bergamo, Italy in March and April.
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Malta adopted new measures to combat the transmission of COVID-19 on the local health authorities’ recommendation. The new measures will help further to tighten social distancing.
As of from today, all bars and local band clubs will remain closed until 1 December 6 am. Furthermore, only 6 people can convene in public spaces instead of 10. Ignoring these measures will result in a 200 fine.
The Covid-19 caseload currently stands at 1,927 positive cases and the total number of deaths has reached 59. The number of new registered cases still outstrips recoveries by far.
Today, the Maltese government announced 106 new cases. Few minutes before, the health authorities had confirmed that two men have lost their battle with COVID-19. The men were 82 and 66 respectively. Both men were in the Intensive Therapy Unit when they died.
Health professionals working at the Intensive Therapy Unit warned that if the government does not take further difficult decisions, more delay in controlling the spread can have a devastating effect on Maltàs health system. At the moment 15 patients are receiving treatment at the Intensive Therapy Unit, described as “a very serious matter” by the health professionals.
LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – The Italian Ambassador to Malta, who will be terminating his mission in the coming weeks, paid a farewell visit to the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Evarist Bartolo.
The meeting was an opportunity to review the main issues on the bilateral, European and international agenda upon which there is a strong harmony between the two countries. Both countries are strongly committed, among other things, to the stability of the central Mediterranean, a shared management of migratory flows at European level as well as the protection of the marine environment and its resources.
The Ambassador expressed his deep appreciation to the Minister for the commitment made to confirm and strengthen the values of the rule of law even in the most dramatic of circumstances that Malta experienced in the past months.
Both Ambassador Sammartino and Minister Bartolo agreed on the necessity to ensure cohesion and collaboration at the European level to counter the COVID-19 pandemic and its serious repercussions on the economic and social conditions of the two countries.
While Malta has registered a new record number of COVID-19 positive cases, the Maltese government has announced new measures to control the pandemic. The Nationalist Opposition has stated that Prime Minister Robert Abela has lost control over the pandemic and the Medical Association declared that if these measures fail there will be no option left except lock downs and curfews as has happened in Spain, France and the UK.
On Friday, the health authorities registered 122 new cases. This brings the number of active cases up to 1,095. The Superintendent of Public Health, Professor Charmaine Gauci confirmed that the number of positive cases related to bars have increased once again. She also appealed to workplaces to take the situation seriously and to implement the necessary measures and to promote teleworking whenever necessary.
From today, masks must also be worn in the streets and in any public outdoor space. Anyone who does not adhere to this measure, will get fined. Till yesterday, masks have been obligatory in public transport, in spaces for public services such as shops.
Entertainment and catering establishments will all be closing at 11pm, as of next Monday. This includes bars and band clubs. The Medical Association said that the closure at 11pm will have no impact at all, while the very low number of 800 fines in two months does not augur well. “Sadly both reflect the government is in reality unwilling to enforce,” added MAM President Martin Balzan.
As of 28th October, rapid testing is to be introduced at the airport and seaport. On Friday, cruise liner MSC Grandiosa was not allowed to disembark passengers in Malta, after a suspected case of coronavirus on board. This was confirmed by Tourism Minister Julia Farrugia Portelli.
The Medical Association said that testing just 15 arrivals a day at the airport was another “fake” measure, meaning that possibly hundreds of cases are coming to Malta with Covid every week and remain undetected. MAM is insisting on obligatory testing on all passengers who do not pretest before arrival should be introduced.
Malta registered the highest number of positive COVID-19 cases in 24 hours since the start of the pandemic. The health authorities confirmed that 112 new coronavirus cases were reported on Thursday.
The number of active cases continues to surge and now stands at 1,009. Up to yesterday, the highest daily number of cases was recorded when 111 cases were reported. This was surpassed on Thursday.
A 59 year-old man became the latest COVID-19 victim on Wednesday and to date the pandemic has claimed 45 lives.
To date, Malta has registered 4,160 coronavirus cases out of which 3,106 have made a recovery. A total of 289,594 swab tests have been carried out.
The Maltese government is under intense pressure from various health associations and other trade unions to re-introduce measures to curb the pandemic. Local reports quoted the Office of the Prime Minister saying that the government is expected to enhance the enforcement to control the spreading of the pandemic.
The Maltese government is under huge pressure with daily positive cases of COVID-19 close to hundred while deaths continue to be registered from COVID every day. So far, Malta has 881 active cases, 44 registered deaths and 3,012 total recoveries.
The Medical Association of Malta, MAM, is calling the Maltese health authorities to come up with an effective strategy and measures, similar to those in Spain, France and the UK, to bring the epidemic under control. The Forum of Maltese declared that the COVID-19 situation could quickly get out of hand, both in terms of hospital and ITU capacity, but also in terms of the ability of people to go on with their normal life and activity. The Malta Union of Teachers, MUT has issued an ultimatum, until Thursday, to the Maltese government to take the necessary actions and implement new measures against the coronavirus pandemic.
The Nationalist Party is insisting that a national public health emergency should be announced as soon as possible. However, Prime Minister Robert Abela declared that there is no need for “state of national panic.” He added that at this moment the government is not considering to shut down the economy, close the airport and lock people at home once again.
According to a recent survey, the government’s handling of the pandemic and the economic instability brought by the coronavirus had an impact on Prime Minister Robert Abelàs performance registering the lowest level of trust among the electorate since he became Prime Minister last January. Partit Laburista leader Robert Abela is now polling at 46.6%. Bernard Grech who has only been leader of the Nationalist Party for a week and Opposition leader for less than that, has gained 30.9%. In terms of votes, the Nationalist Party has halved the gap to 30,000 from the 57,000 vote gap.
A 68-year-old Italian man has lost his life in Malta after a fork-lifter fell on top of him. The Police confirmed that the accident happened on Friday at 8:15am at the industrial zone of Birżebbuġia. The victim originally from Paterno was certified dead on site. The Police are investigating the case and an inquiry has been appointed.