Mur­dered jour­nal­ist’s fam­ily seeks in­quiry into Malta PM

The Guardian - - World - Jen­nifer Rankin

Daphne Caru­ana Gal­izia is call­ing for Malta’s prime min­is­ter, Joseph Mus­cat, to be in­ves­ti­gated as part of the in­quiries into her mur­der.

Mus­cat has an­nounced he will quit in Jan­uary, af­ter in­ves­ti­ga­tors al­leged links be­tween his ad­min­is­tra­tion and those who or­dered the killing.

He told re­porters yes­ter­day he in­tended to re­sign “more or less” on 12 Jan­uary and would limit him­self to day-to-day ad­min­is­tra­tion un­til then. But his re­fusal to go quickly has an­gered Caru­ana Gal­izia’s fam­ily, who have vowed to use all le­gal means to en­sure he has no say over the mur­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Her son Matthew yes­ter­day con­firmed the fam­ily was call­ing for an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into Mus­cat’s role. A le­gal let­ter from the fam­ily, first re­ported by the Times of Malta, urges au­thor­i­ties to en­sure all rel­e­vant ev­i­dence is pre­served, amid fears vi­tal doc­u­ments could be de­stroyed.

In par­lia­ment yes­ter­day, Mus­cat de­fended his gov­ern­ment’s han­dling of the mur­der. “The case showed that Malta’s in­sti­tu­tions work and ev­ery­one is equal be­fore the law,” he said.

Sep­a­rately it emerged one of three men ac­cused of Caru­ana Gal­izia’s mur­der has ap­pealed to the Maltese pres­i­dent, Ge­orge Vella, for a par­don in ex­change for “pro­vid­ing all the in­for­ma­tion he knows on var­i­ous facts”. Vin­cent Mus­cat (no re­la­tion to the prime min­is­ter) claimed an ear­lier plea for mercy was not han­dled in a “proper, cor­rect and just man­ner”.

Pro­test­ers gath­ered near Malta’s par­lia­ment yes­ter­day, and clips on so­cial me­dia showed the crowd boo­ing as MPs en­tered the build­ing, or chant­ing “as­sas­sins, re­sign now”.

A del­e­ga­tion of seven MEPs be­gins an ur­gent two-day fact-find­ing mis­sion today. “Malta is a part of Europe, this con­cerns us all,” tweeted the Dutch MEP So­phie in ’t Veld, who is lead­ing the mis­sion. “Jus­tice and truth must now pre­vail. There should not be im­punity, no cover ups, and no cul­prit should es­cape trial.”

On Satur­day, the Maltese prop­erty and gam­bling ty­coon Yor­gen Fenech was charged with com­plic­ity in the mur­der two years ago. He has pleaded not guilty. In­ves­ti­ga­tors say they have un­cov­ered links be­tween Fenech and Mus­cat’s former chief of staff, Keith Schem­bri, who re­signed last week.

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