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Malta murder: London vigil on 4th anniversary of Daphne killing

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The Association of European Journalists, the Commonwealth Journalists Association, and leading international press freedom organisations organised and took part in a Vigil outside the Maltese High Commission in central London on Friday 15 October, the eve of the 4th anniversary of the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.

The Vigil was co-sponsored by the Maltese community in London, ARTICLE 19, the Association of European Journalists, the Commonwealth Journalists Association, Index on Censorship, PEN International, Reporters Without Borders, and Transparency International-UK

Speakers at the Vigil:-

  • Robert Zammit – Welcome on behalf of the Maltese community and Message to the London Vigil from Daphne’s family
  • Caoilfhionn Gallagher QC, Head of the International Legal Team for the Family of Daphne Caruana Galizia
  • John Sweeney, Journalist
  • Bénédicte Paviot, UK correspondent of France 24 and Chair of the RSF UK Advisory Board – topic of speech not confirmed 
  • William Horsley,  Media Freedom Representative and UK head of the Association of European Journalists (AEJ) –  Reading extracts from Daphne’s final interview
  • Azzurra Moores, Campaigns Officer at Reporters without Borders – Recommendations of the public inquiry into Daphne’s murder
  • Aurélia Dondo, Europe Programme Coordinator at PEN International – Reading a poem in Daphne’s memory, and closing thank you.

A message from Daphne’s family

Four years after her assassination Daphne’s words still ring true:

I know that what I am writing will not make a difference, but I have to write it because somebody has to write. We have to document what’s happening.

Rather than giving into anger or disillusionment it is better, and more consoling, to know that we have done our best to avert the triumph of the undeserving.

 

For years I have been a target of sustained assaults, and not just me but also my sons and other members of my family, across all the media, broadcast, print, the internet, official and unofficial.

 

I will say this to my fellow journalists, the worst thing you can do when you see another journalist under assault by the government or the opposition is to sink your head below the parapet hoping that the same thing will not happen to you. The solution is not to avoid becoming inconvenient but to fight back. What is the point of having freedom of speech if you can’t use it to say that the people who govern you are crooks?

 

Never give into authority just because it is authority. If a law is in itself illegal, if it violates fundamental principles of human rights and liberties, then you are not obliged to obey it – on the contrary it is your duty not to do so.

 

We can no longer say that it is corrupt politicians who have brought our society to this point, for it can no longer be denied that those corrupt politicians are a reflection of society.

It’s true that life is unfair and that much of it can’t be helped, but where I can do anything to avoid unfairness, or to set it straight, then I will. I cannot bear the thought of injustice, still less the reality of it.

It’s the nature of my personality to think in terms of do your worst, until the only option left to you is to take out a contract on my life.

 

They would gladly see me dead, which appears to be the only way that I will shut up.

To everyone gathered in London today calling for justice, and to everyone following from afar: we will never give up fighting for justice, but could never have come this far without your support. Thank you for commemorating Daphne and for ensuring that her voice is not silenced.

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