The murdered journalist’s family accuses the Maltese Prime Minister of holding onto power
The family of murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia accused the Maltese Prime Minister of holding power after announcing that he would resign next month.
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat confirmed last night that he would resign after protests about his reaction to the murder of anti-corruption journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.
He promised to resign as Labor leader after the election of a new leader on January 12, which could not appease the critics who demanded his immediate resignation.
His government was startled by an ongoing investigation into the death of Caruana Galizia, described as a & # 39; one-woman WikiLeaks & # 39 ;, who was killed in a car bomb in October 2017.
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat (pictured today) has been criticized by the sister of murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia for holding onto power after he had reduced his resignation to January
Galizia & # 39; s sister Corinne Vellay criticized Muscat's decision to reduce his resignation until next month.
& # 39; While Malta and the world are facing the reality that the Prime Minister's Office was in charge of killing our mother and wife and trying to cover it up for more than two years, Joseph Muscat has decided to postpone his resignation as Premier, & she said.
& # 39; He did this despite the involvement of Keith Schembri, his right hand, in the murder of his most powerful critic.
& # 39; Muscat has postponed his resignation in an attempt to continue to protect himself and Schembri. There is no alternative explanation.
& # 39; His continued tenure as prime minister is unbearable for anyone who cares about justice. His role in investigating the murder of our wife and mother is illegal. Until he resigns, we will use all legal means to ensure that Muscat is not further involved in the investigation and criminal proceedings, except as a possible suspect. & # 39;
Muscat, a friend of Tony Blair, announced that he would resign despite his Labor MPs who unanimously supported him at an emergency meeting earlier on Sunday.
In a television report on Sunday evening, Muscat said he would quit as leader of the ruling Labor party on January 12 and that in the days that follow, I will resign as Prime Minister & # 39 ;.
Joseph and Michelle Muscat with Tony and Cherie Blair in 2007. Premier Muscat said he would resign as leader of the Labor Party on January 12 and in the days thereafter as the prime minister
Critics, including members of the Caruana Galizia family, have accused Muscat, 45, of protecting those involved in the murder of the popular journalist and blogger who has uncovered favoritism and sleaze within the small country's political and business elite.
Earlier Sunday, after a four-hour crisis meeting, a party insider said: & The whole group was in favor of Joseph Muscat, and we told him it is up to him to choose when he subtracts. & # 39;
The Muscat government has been shocked by a continuous investigation into the death of Caruana Galizia, described as a & # 39; one-woman WikiLeaks & # 39 ;, which was killed in a car bomb in October 2017.
Meeting in Muscat's Summer House, MPs also agreed to restore Chris Cardona as economy minister and vice-leader.
Cardona announced last week that he suspended & # 39; himself & # 39; because the investigation into the murder of Caruana Galizia was involved in a car bomb attack top officials.
Last week, the scandal demanded the scalp of Muscat & # 39; s best assistant Keith Schembri and former tourism minister, Konrad Mizzi.
Police sources said Fenech had identified Schembri as the & # 39; real brain & # 39; behind the murder.
Caruana Galizia had accused Schembri of corruption along with Mizzi and Cardona.
The Caruana Galizia family and thousands of protesters have repeatedly taken to the streets and called for the resignation of Muscat.
Last week, the Special Rapporteur of the Council of Europe, Pieter Omtzigt, also called the Labor PM to & # 39; as quickly as possible & # 39; to resign.
Yorgen Fenech (pictured yesterday), a Maltese hotelier and director of the Maltese electricity company, was accused in the evening courtroom hearing with an accomplice causing the explosion that killed the 53-year-old reporter while she was driving home
Timeline of murder of Malta journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia
Car bomb – October 16, 2017
On October 16, 2017, Daphne Caruana Galizia is killed in a car bomb on her vehicle, not far from her home in the north of the island.
At the age of 53, she was known for investigating high-level corruption, including contributing to the Panama Papers 2016 data breach.
Her murder causes an outpouring of grief on the island, one of her sons accusing Muscat of having complicity and Malta a & # 39; mafia island & # 39; to make.
On December 4, 2017, authorities arrest eight people for the murder.
Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia (photo in 2011) was killed by a car bomb in October 2017
Costs – July 16, 2019
On July 16, 2019, three suspects are formally charged with the murder: the Alfred and George Degiorgio brothers, as well as Vince Muscat, all in their fifties.
The brain has not yet been identified.
On 20 September, the government announced a public inquiry into the murder, just before the Council of Europe's three-month deadline for initiating such an investigation.
Legal immunity – 20 November 2019
On November 20, the Maltese police arrest tycoon Yorgen Fenech in connection with the murder while sailing away from Malta on his yacht.
Fenech owns a Dubai company called 17 Black, of which Caruana Galizia had reported that it had ties with the government.
The arrest comes one day after the prime minister promises to forgive an alleged intermediary if he mentions the person who commissioned the murder.
On 23, Fenech demands legal immunity before revealing what he knows about the case. He is released on bail three days later.
Ministers stop – November 26, 2019
On November 26, Muscat's chief of staff, Keith Schembri, and his tourism minister, Konrad Mizzi, will resign. They were accused by Caruana Galizia of being involved in corruption, which they denied.
Economy Minister Chris Cardona says he & # 39; is suspending himself & # 39 ;.
Schembri is arrested, but released two days later without charge, which led to accusations of a cover-up. Some sources claim that Schembri was the brain behind the murder of Caruana Galizia.
Premier will resign – November 30, 2019
On November 30, party sources say Muscat will resign on January 18 as soon as the people behind the murder of Caruana Galizia have been charged
& # 39; He has always said he will be leaving soon and he feels it is time to leave now, & # 39; said a party source.
But Muscat himself insisted that he should remain in power until the case closed & # 39; used to be.
On Saturday parties from insiders said Muscat was ready to leave after the people behind the murder were charged.
The PvdA would then choose its successor on January 18.
& # 39; The Prime Minister has said from the outset that he will not leave a stone undisturbed to solve this despicable murder under his care, and he has delivered exactly that with the prosecution of someone who is supposed to have committed the murder & # 39 said a party internet.
In the meantime, a European Parliament delegation will arrive in Malta late Monday and stay until Wednesday.
Led by Dutch MEP Sophie in & # 39; t Veld, he will investigate doubts about the independence of the judiciary and investigate allegations of high-level corruption.
& # 39; Malta is part of Europe, & # 39; tweeted in & # 39; t Field. & # 39; This concerns us all. & # 39;
Leaked emails revealed in court indicated that both Schembri and Mizzi would receive payments from a Dubai company called 17 Black, owned by Fenech.
The killing probe was boosted after last week's arrest of the tycoon, whose business interests include the energy, casinos, and tourism sectors.
His detention came after an alleged murder broker, taxi driver Melvin Theuma, was offered immunity in exchange for identifying those involved.
Although Schembri, the former Chief of Staff of Muscat, was arrested on Tuesday, his release on Thursday led to accusations of a cover.
Anti-government protesters would hold a new rally on Sunday outside the parliament in Valletta.
A Maltese court is expected to decide Monday on a request from Fenech to remove the lead investigator in the case, Keith Arnaud, for allegations that he also had close ties with Schembri and the prime minister.
It comes after party sources said that Muscat will resign on January 18.
Insiders said that Muscat would resign on Saturday as soon as the people behind the murder were charged and his Labor party had chosen a new leader.
& # 39; He has always said he will be leaving soon and he feels it is time to leave now, & # 39; said a party source.
First, however, he wanted to see Daphne Caruana Galizia's murder resolved under his watch, as he had promised, adding sources.
& # 39; After the brain or brain has been tried in court, he intends to announce that he will resign and that there will be a leadership election on January 18, & # 39 ;, a party source said.
The sources emphasized that he would not stay after January 18.
Thousands of protesters took to the streets in the capital Valletta on Friday evening after Muscat refused to give immunity to the prime suspect in the 2017 murder, tycoon Yorgen Fenech, to reveal what he knows about the case.
It was the sixth such demonstration in two weeks.
According to sources, Fenech has identified Schembri as the brain behind Caruana Galizia & # 39; s car drill in 2017.
Schembri was arrested on Tuesday, but his release on Thursday led to accusations of a cover-up.
Parents of the murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia Rose, left, and Michael Vella, right, attend a protest outside Prime Minister Joseph Muscat's office
People hold placards and photos of killed journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia on 29 November a protest started by the family and civil movements of Galizia
Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat makes a statement in the media about the investigation into the murder of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia on November 22 in Malta
A demonstrator is taking a photo of Daphne Caruana Galizia outside the office of the first miniser on Friday
The family of Caruana Galizia, who accused the prime minister of protecting his old chief of staff, had repeatedly called on him to leave.
& # 39; We share the shock and anger of Malta with the release of Keith Schembri, & # 39; said the family in a statement.
& # 39; At least two witnesses and multiple physical evidence involve Schembri in the murder of our wife and mother. & # 39;
They accused Muscat of playing & # 39; judge, jury, and executioner in a murder investigation involving so far three of his closest colleagues & # 39; s.
Muscat said Friday that he had withdrawn from the decision to grant Fenech immunity.
A police van with entrepreneur Yorgen Fenech leaves the courts of Malta in Valletta on November 30, above and below
Fenech was sued and charged with complicity in the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia
The prime minister later said that he had reported Fenech to the police for attempted blackmail, and said the mogul would have threatened to involve him in the affair if he did not get a favor.
Fenech, a tycoon whose business interests include the energy and tourism sector, was arrested on his hunt last week after an alleged murder broker, taxi driver Melvin Theuma, was offered grace to identify those involved.
That arrest was quickly followed by the resignation of Schembri and tourism minister Konrad Mizzi, while Economy Minister Chris Cardona said he suspended & # 39; himself.
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