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30 July 2014

MEP accuses PM of far right sentiments and fanning racism

 - Friday, 05 July 2013, 15:12 , by Jacob Borg

PN MEP Roberta Metsola has accused Prime Minister Joseph Muscat of “fanning the flames of racism” with his strongly worded statements on  what he terms as 'illegal' immigration.

Speaking at a press conference at the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), Dr Metsola said that were Dr Muscat still an MEP, he would find himself most comfortable within the far right fringes of the European Parliament.

Dr Metsola insisted that the best way forward was to proceed with “tact and diplomacy,” slamming the Prime Minister’s “short-sighted and misguided approach.”

Over the past few days the PM has threatened to use Malta’s veto in order to bully the EU into helping share the its immigration burden. He has also not ruled out resorting to push-backs, returning immigrants to their port of origin.

Dr Metsola pointed out that such push-backs are actually illegal.

The MEP said that Malta risks isolation within the EU if the government keeps up its current rhetoric, a point on which EASO head Robert Wisser disagreed.

“I do not have the feeling that Malta is sidelined, Member States are all very equal within the EU,” Dr Wisser said, although he declined to comment on the political aspects of the PM’s recent remarks.

On the previous administrations own track-record on the immigration issue, Dr Metsola said that she never denied that there was room for improvement, but she insisted that the way forward is through respecting international norms and highlighting Malta’s geographical challenges,

She said that 300 immigrants arriving in Malta was the equivalent of 1,000’s arriving in a mid-sized country.  

28 comments

Post Comment
Shaun Anthony Camilleri says:
06 July 2013 13:52

How is he fanning racism by calling them what they are 'Illegal Immigrants". You can call them by any other name but they still remain illegal. Did they enter using a legal document? No! then they are illegal. If they want refugee status they must go to their nearest country and that is international law. Also just because we talk or comment about the problem of illegal immigrants does not make anyone racist. You try to shut people up by calling them racist and have been doing it for years - and people have had enough and according to people I speak to and hear the great majority are against people taking advantage of us. 

Post Reply

CJohn Zammit says:
06 July 2013 02:24

From the link provided by Mr. Jesmond Farrugia (with Thanks!): http://www.hrw.org/node/108828/section/5
it is stated that in the 10 years between 2009 and 2011, an average of 1,470 irregular immigrants landed in Malta, per year.

On that basis, and assuming that, (i) we have attained immortality, meaning, that none of us will die -- including all newcomers regardless of year of arrival; and (ii) there are no new births in Malta, meaning that, the current population of 420,000 of (pure) Maltese remains the same, it would take almost 143 years for the newcomers to equal 50% of the natives. And almost 286 years to equal our numbers!

Let me add, for the benefit of GL Sammut, that that is not rocket science, but solid Math and Logic -- two essential subject which I suspect have eluded you.

For the rest of us, especially Louise Vella:
1470 represents a mere one-third of 1% of the population -- a statistically insignificant number; meaning that ... your fears are unfounded.

And because I am a Labourite-from-the-cradle, and proud of it, I reserve my last comment for Eddie: On this particular issue, the new Prime Minister is wrong. Period. And so are you.
it's one time when I get the urge to kick your sorry ass.
(Lest I am misunderstood, that last comment is not a call to violence to the person of the Prime Minister or Eddie's; it's a Canadian way of expressing utter disgust, because while I am Maltese-born and still very much a Maltese citizen -- and proud of my heritage -- I am Canadian -- a legal, nay LEGAL, immigrant at a time when we were not wanted by the host country's man on the street ... for the same irrational reasons espoused here: taking away jobs and changing the fabric of society.
Even a cursory look at Canada will tell you that we -- immigrants, unwanted by the average guy -- proved them wrong!
And so will the new wave of migrants to the EU --Malta is an EU-State, remember?).

Push-back is not only NOT an option; it's non-negotiable ... as enshrined by the very first sentence of the Preamble to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
"Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, ... "

And to those, here, who choose to turn this issue into a bludgeon, with which to bash your political opponent ... shame on you!

Illegal immigrants posing a crisis? Not by a longshot!


Post Reply

Antoine Vella says:
05 July 2013 22:50

Those who are harping about "illegal" immigrants should remember that even hate speech and racial discrimination are illegal so, by the same reasoning, anyone committing these acts becomes automatically an "illegal Maltese" (or an "illegal leprechaun" in one case).

Should illegal Maltese be treated like illegal immigrants?

Post Reply

Jason Bartoli says:
05 July 2013 22:41

Well Done Roberta!

Finally, someone that sees beyond short term populism and a couple of votes.

Post Reply

Michael Walter says:
05 July 2013 20:19

There is an old saying in England.'Charity begins at home'.When European countries have full employment,when their senior citizens are all seeing their last years out in comfort and free of care,then there might be a place for immigrants.
These illegal immigrants should stay in their country of birth,and build up its infrastructure,just as our forefathers did.Billions of dollars and pounds have been poured into these countries over the decades in aid.This is reflected in the opulence their leaders live in,and all the weaponry they have accumulated.

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Eddy Priviteera says:
05 July 2013 17:25

Antoine. What's so good about siding with a foreign institution AGAINST your own Maltese government on an issue on which the vast majority of the Maltese people are united on ??????

Post Reply

A Bezz says:
05 July 2013 18:28

Just because you say the same things a million times over, on different media, it does not make you the voice of the 'majority'!!!  And even if the majority of Maltese people are in favour of the push-back policy (which I doubt), it does NOT make the policy right!!  It just makes the Maltese people heartless and conscienceless!

Post Reply

GL Sammut says:
05 July 2013 18:58

Dr Metsola is a new Mep trying to look like Ms Goody Goody to prepare for the next Mep election. She might look good in the eyes of the EU but not so sure in the eyes of the Maltese people. She is one of the new kids on the EU block and she probably will have to learn the hard way. Ms Metsola should be trying to talk the EU into supporting these people in their own countries. Give a man a fish and you feed him for one day, but teach him how to fish and you will feed him for life. Dr Metsola and others: "Never put others ahead of your own family." especially so as to look popular.

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Ramon Garcia says:
05 July 2013 19:21

Yet again Eddy, more proof that you live in the past. This is not a football match..."siding@ with the foreigners against Malta. I repeat...we are European and we have obligations to humanity. Come out of the middle ages once and for all.

Post Reply

Caramel Camel says:
05 July 2013 22:52

Well said Mr Garcia. Tell me Eddy is there ANYTHING AT ALL about this Muscat government that you disagree with ?

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Ramon Garcia says:
06 July 2013 11:00

Mr Camel........Eddy wears blinkers......

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GL Sammut says:
05 July 2013 20:03

Eddie some of these people have a reason for talking the way they do. They either have an agenda or trying to secure a job. It does not take  rocket science to tell you that the vast majority of Maltese people want this issue closed once and for all. And it is no secret that the Maltese people are sick of these illegal immigrants taking their jobs. Also try walking the streets of Valletta or walk along on the sidewalk near the bus Terminals. If one cannot push them back, then accept them as refugees, give them all a visa and send them on their way to Brussels and help them fulfill their dream.

Post Reply

Ramon Garcia says:
05 July 2013 20:59

So old fashioned and racist! Very macho but so medieval and backwards.

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Joseph Gaffarena says:
05 July 2013 17:24

Dr. Metsola,we care only to safeguard our living, and do not care about what is illegal or not.It is now crystal clear that these illegals are taking our jobs. Your job is secure, but ours is not.Most of these illegals have an illegal job,and still take all the benefits.
If our prime minister will do what the PN, in government never did about these illegals, be sure he will have my vote in the coming election.Take a look around europe and you see for yourself the grave situation these illegals brought with them.
B e sure in the coming mep,s election I, will not vote for you.

Post Reply

Ramon Garcia says:
05 July 2013 19:18

Not to worry.....I and thousands of others will vote for Dr Metsola rather than for gimmicks and inhumanity.

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Vincent Williams says:
05 July 2013 17:12

Lets not twist words PN MEP Metsola...what is illegal stays illegal. On the other hand the least that can give us lectures about the precarious situation that the country is in. Because of the illegal immigration are the PN MEPs. Because it is the fault of the PN MEPs and GonziPN when they accepted that the EU countries shall accept illegal immigrants ONLY on a voluntary basis. Because the PN Government cowardly than refused to take solid action to safe guard the country's interests. As always PN means bla, bla, bla and no real action.

Post Reply

Anthony J. Borg says:
05 July 2013 16:52

The Prime Minister did a grave mistake.

With this kind of speech he is fuelling racial hatred, and is ruining Malta's image by giving the impression that we are racist’s.

I must say that Joseph Muscat has succeeded to tarnish Malta's image and will harm the country's credibility.

What a pity...

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GL Sammut says:
05 July 2013 17:18

What the Prime Minister is doing is putting the welfare of the Maltese People first. Trying to be popular like the PN did and is doing at the moment in disregarding the call of the people. Looking good does not feed the family and pay the rent and that is why the people voted for change. Malta's credibility was long time tarnished when the PN was in power and Malta was dubbed one of the most corrupt countries in all of Europe.

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GL Sammut says:
05 July 2013 16:36

Here come the opportunist, new PN Mep Dr Metsola. Joseph Muscat is doing what the EX PM did not have the guts to do, and that is to protect the Maltese people. Dr Metsola is sounding off the echo of her Leader. Dr Lawrence Gonzi set up a Referendum to give the Maltese people an opportunity to express their wishes regarding divorce. Maybe Joseph Muscat should be afforded that same opportunity and offer a referendum and see how the Maltese people feel about the illegal immigration situation? After all it is the Maltese people who have to think about their future. If Dr Metsola wants to do something real worth it for the illegal immigrants and truly represent the Maltese people, which is her primary job, why not insist that the other 27 EU States stick to the promise they made to Malta, and that is to share the burden with the illegal immigration problem. Malta first Dr Metsola. The Maltese people voted for change not to put up  with the same old rhetoric.

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Eddy Priviteera says:
05 July 2013 17:22

Anthony J.Biorg: Simon Busuttil has harmed Malta's interests because he passed a message that the opposition is ready to side with the EU whenever Malta's vital interests are being threatened by the EU !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SHAME ON SIMON AND WHOEVER SUPPORTS HIM ON THIS MATTER !

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Ramon Garcia says:
06 July 2013 11:11

I`m not ashamed at all Eddy....and please stop shouting...we`re not in your glorious 1970s any more thank God.

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Jesmond Farrugia says:
05 July 2013 16:04

As a person who happens to believe that each and every individual on this planet is of equal and inestimable value, being created in the image of the divinity, I welcome Mr. Wisser's remarks.

The issue here is the apparent inability of the European Commission to formalise an equitable solidarity mechanism that differentiates between genuine refugees such as those fleeing the crisis in Syria; and those who are economic migrants for which internationally recognised mechanisms are already in place.

In the same way that it is not in Malta's interests that the current status quo be maintained, it is also most certainly not in the interests of migrants themselves, who can look forward to a minimum of 18 months detention if they are adults, and years of  maladjusted existence if they fail to qualify for refugee status, as many do.

We must ensure that those migrants who do land on our shores are treated with dignity.

The following HRW report highlights the illegal and unregulated trafficking of persons which Dr. Muscat has referred to:

http://www.hrw.org/node/108828/section/5

Dr. Muscat is a pragmatic humanitarian and has acted justly.

Post Reply

John Vella says:
05 July 2013 15:56

Thank you Dr. Metsola,  to advise us not to mouth off just in case. I assure you we are not imzazen.Since when you have become an expert on the subject from Brussels if not to please? I question have you become like that advertisement only being your master's voice? we are facing the problem on the streets. We reached a stage that even the police said some areas are out of bounds for them to which I experienced it myself. No my sweet, we are sick with the whole noon sense of a Europe of Abel and a Europe Cain, those of Abel are non elected fat cats and us of Abel pay our taxes not to rock the boat because Abel is buddy buddy with the one upstairs.

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Joe Cardona says:
05 July 2013 15:55

The usual shortsighted behavior of Dr. Muscat.

Thanks Dr. Metsola for pointing out that not everyone shares Dr. Muscat's views.

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GL Sammut says:
05 July 2013 16:48

The PN did not have the guts or the initiative to put the Maltese people first. They chose to be the goody, goody good guys and that is why they lost the election by a huge margin. This illegal immigration problem is not going to go away soon on the contrary it is going to get worse. The PN Mep is trying to ride on the occasion. Dr Metsola should be talking about what is going to happen to Malta in ten years time or so. Every Maltese citizen should be able to figure that one out for themselves. Right now it is only a few towns and villages that are experiencing the effect of the illegal immigrant but sooner or later every town in Malta and Gozo will be effected.

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GL Sammut says:
05 July 2013 16:52

No not everyone shares Dr Muscat's views. The majority of the Maltese people share Dr Muscat's view on this subject. 

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Louise Vella says:
05 July 2013 15:52

If the PN does not heed the people's voice on the problem of illegal
immigration it will head to a bigger defeat than the one of the last
election.

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Antoine Vella says:
05 July 2013 15:24

Thankfully there is someone who defends the good name of Malta.

We are not all racists in Malta and Joseph Muscat is not speaking in the name of all of us Maltese.

Let's push back racism.

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