On Oct. 16, 2017, journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia was assassinated in Malta with a bomb planted in her car. This Monday was Galizia's birthday - she would have been 54 if she was still alive. The Maltese journalist was investigating corruption scandals revealed in Malta. As a journalist working on a corruption case in an EU member country, a country used by the mafia to launder illicit money, she had no safety of life.Galizia's murderers and abettors have not been found. Throughout the investigations conducted so far, in which the lead investigator was changed, the name of a Swiss bank has come up a lot.
It was found that between the late hours of Oct. 15 and the early hours of Oct. 16, two people planted a bomb under Galizia's grey Peugeot 104, and the bomb was detonated using a circuit board fitted with a sim card and triggered by a mobile phone message when the journalist got in the car. It was also determined that the assassination was organized from a pleasure boat named Maya, which was caught on video leaving the Grand Harbor in Valetta, Malta on Oct. 15, 2017. The investigation file also recorded that the person using the SIM card to trigger the bomb called someone and said that he caught a big fish, and then called his wife and asked her to prepare something to eat as he was on the way home. Maya was found to have entered Marsa Harbor after these calls.
The last message Galizia shared on social media just half an hour before her death was very meaningful, "There are crooks everywhere you look now. The situation is desperate." Although the Maltese police obtained many details regarding the murder, the perpetrators are still at large, which is scandalous. For some reason, the EU does not seem to show much interest in the case despite Malta being an EU member. At the European Parliament, a young Maltese deputy Roberta Metsola is the only politician actively engaging in the case. She is working hard to unravel the murder and identify the murderers; we owe it to Metsola that Galizia's memory has been kept alive up until this day. We hope that Metsola will be successful in her endeavors. She believes that revealing the mafia ties behind the murder is essential to be successful in the fight against corruption in Malta. Her success is crucial both for Malta and the EU.Although the EU is sensitive to issues like press freedom and the safety of journalists, when it comes to non-EU countries, both the EU and the European Parliament remain inactive in the face of the Galizia case. The Maltese government also made no progress on the issue other than giving lectures on the subject. I wonder if there are some power groups disturbed by the Galizia murder investigation. Why are the people who raise their voices on press freedom in non-EU countries remaining silent in the case of Malta?Unless the EU ensures the successful finalization of this investigation in Malta, it won't set a good example to the rest of the world on the fight against corruption and the safety of journalists. What journalist would dare investigate corruption in Malta if this investigation is not concluded?
The EU should pay more attention to the problematic cases in Malta and other EU countries. Only a month ago, the result of the trial on the murders committed by the German neo-Nazi terror group, the National Socialist Underground (NSU), caused great disappointment. In the trial, the only surviving perpetrator received life imprisonment, whereas the possible deeper ties of the NSU remained in the dark. To put it differently, even if there is nothing behind the NSU, this could not be proven in a plausible way.
We will keep following the Galizia case since we highly value press freedom and the safety of journalists. It is peculiar that those who raise their voices in the name of journalists abetting or supporting terror groups are silent in the case of a journalist who was assassinated while investigating a corruption scandal. All in all, an investigation on the murder of an EU citizen journalist in an EU country must concern all of us.