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Caruana Galizia family pushed back as EP delegates arrive to meet PM

Daphne Caruana Galizia's sister, Mandy Mallia, with her daughter, Megan Mallia, at Castille Square behind police barricades. Photo: Cami Appelgren.

There was a heavy police presence at Castille Square this morning that was again cordoned off by barriers as members of the European Parliament delegation arrived for a meeting with Joseph Muscat scheduled for 8.30am on Tuesday.

The citizens at the square included members of the family of assassinated journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia as well as dozens of protestors who have been calling for justice and the resignation of those linked to the journalist’s assassination among thousands protesting in Valletta almost-daily for more than a week.

As the police insisted they move behind the barriers, a member of the family said: “Are you afraid of an old woman?”

PN MP Beppe Fenech Adami could be heard talking to the police. “If there were 10,000 people here, there may be a need for this. But this is unnecessary,” he said as the police insisted family members move behind the increasing number of barriers being placed around the square to prevent people from getting close to the Prime Minister’s Office.

It followed another night of protests in front of parliament on Monday night, where citizens were blocked off Freedom Square in front of the parliament building. Citizens reacted by closing off all exits from the building, forcing Labour MPs to exit from Valletta ditch while people screamed, “you’re running like rats”.

“Look at this photo,” Caruana Galizia’s sister told the police, holding up a photo of the journalist brutally killed in a car bomb on 16 October 2017.

A Labour Party supporter pushed an individual in the crowd and insulted the people who gathered until he was moved by the police.

Evidence has emerged of the involvement of top government officials in the assassination.

In a packed schedule for a two-day visit, MEPs will be meeting government officials as well as the Attorney General, the Police Commissioner and investigators assigned to the investigation into the journalist’s assassination. They will also be meeting the Chamber of Advocates, civil society groups and journalists to assess the situation in Malta.

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