The national association fighting for press freedom in Italy – Articolo 21 – yesterday paid tribute to slain journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia in its annual meeting in Rome in which The Shift also received an award for press freedom.
As Italian daily La Repubblica yesterday announced Caruana Galizia as the Person of the Year, Italian journalists from across the country pledged support for investigations into her work and her death.
The newly elected President of Articolo 21 Paolo Borrometi remembered the solidarity Caruana Galizia had shown him when she sent him a personal message when he faced threats.
Borrometi, who attended the meeting yesterday under police escort for his protection, said that Caruana Galizia’s words were important to him during a difficult time.
During a press award ceremony recognising the contribution of investigative journalists throughout Italy, The Shift received an award for press freedom by Articolo 21. The award was received by journalist Caroline Muscat who was invited to deliver a speech during the ceremony in Rome yesterday.
Addressing the audience, Muscat spoke of Caruana Galizia’s work, and her contribution to journalism in Malta.
“Daphne was assassinated because she was doing her job. No effort at seeking the truth should be spared, and no word should be silenced in the search for this truth…But whether it was fuel smugglers, energy deals, money laundering, or the shady governments that Malta has become increasingly cosy with… the point is that this is the climate that enables the assassination of a friend, a climate that thrives on silencing the truth,” Muscat said.
Muscat also delivered ‘a message from Daphne’ by the Caruana Galizia family, which recalled a post the slain journalist had written a few days after the 3 June general election entitled, ‘Right and wrong are not a popularity contest’.
“There is something else I should say before I go: when people taunt you or criticise you for being ‘negative’ or for failing to go with their flow, or for not adopting an attitude of benign tolerance to their excesses, bear in mind always that they, and not you, are the ones who are wrong,” Caruana Galizia had written.
The ceremony ended with a commitment to increased collaboration between journalists in defence of press freedom.