Just half an hour before journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia was assassinated by a bomb strapped to her Pugeot in Malta, she was hard at work. Best known for her work on the Panama Papers, Galizia had posted to her blog about an unfolding court case that was one of many trailing threads investigative journalists have been following since the infamous cache of documents dropped. One of those investigative journalists was Galizia’s own son, Matthew Capuana Galizia, who was on the scene just moments after the explosion that killed his mother. Now he has strong words for the Maltese government and others he views as complicit in Galizia’s murder:
“My mother was assassinated because she stood between the rule of law and those who sought to violate it, like many strong journalists. This is what happens when the institutions of the state are incapacitated: the last person left standing is often a journalist. Which makes her the first person left dead.”
The younger Galizia described the horrific moments after the bomb went off, trying desperately to get into the car even as it burned and he realized he was surrounded by his “mother’s body parts all around me.” Two policemen arrived on the scene with a single fire extinguisher.
Meanwhile the deceased Galizia’s last blog post was live, covering the courtroom testimony of opposition leader Simon Busuttil in a case involving corruption, libel, a “shady bank,” and the Maltese Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff, who Galicia called “that crook Keith Schemer.” “There are crooks everywhere you look now,” she wrote. “The situation is desperate.”
In addition to a Maltese investigation into the assassination, Dutch forensic experts and members of the U.S. FBI are on their way to assist. Given the line of inquiry that Galizia was pursuing before she was killed, and her son’s assertion that a “long list of police commissioners” are among those who share responsibility for Galicia’s death, it’s a sound plan.
As opposition leader Adrian Delia put it, “We will not accept an investigation by the commissioner of police, army commander or duty magistrate, all of whom were at the heart of criticism by Capuana Galizia. What happened today is not an ordinary killing. It is a consequence of the total collapse of the rule of law which has been going on for the past four years.”
(Via The Guardian)