The Malta Independent 30 September 2022, Friday
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It’s scary that any person can see murdering a woman in cold blood as ‘normal’ - Daphne's niece

Wednesday, 17 August 2022, 12:53 Last update: about 2 months ago

It’s scary that any person can see murdering a woman - a human being - in cold blood as ‘normal’,” Amy Mallia, an activist who is Daphne Caruana Galizia's niece said.

She spoke during a vigil for Caruana Galizia held on Tuesday night.

“Daphne the journalist, Daphne the mother, Daphne the daughter, the sister, the aunt, the friend. We all knew one version or another of Daphne. But I never thought in a million years that I would be seeing the version of her that was reduced to just another statistic – that of assassinated journalists. Nor the version of her whose burning car I have images of forever ingrained in my mind, desperately calling her number over and over again at 3.19pm on the 16th of October of 2017, just after school, hoping that the horrifying news we had just received was a mistake,” Amy Mallia said.

She hoped, on that day, that Daphne was still alive, “hoping that my aunt would still be around. Refreshing news portals’ websites, hoping against hope that Daphne could somehow have survived that brutal bomb. Only to deduce, on seeing a horrific photograph in those frantic minutes, that Daphne could never have survived the blast, that blew her and her car to pieces mere metres from her home.”

“Never in a million years would I have thought that I would be seeing the version of Daphne being lowered into the cold ground while, we who love her so much, looked on, when we should still be enjoying the version of her who still had so much life left to live, and who would have so dearly loved the grandchildren she was deprived of ever knowing.”

“Neither did I ever think I would see the version of her who, months and years after her assassination, is still ridiculed or made the butt of sick jokes and disturbing memes by people who should know better. Nor the version of Daphne whose killing was reduced to and was disturbingly referred to as ‘just business’, with Daphne herself being seen as a nuisance to be ‘dealt with’, her life stopped by the simple push of a button. It’s scary that any person can see murdering a woman – a human being - in cold blood as ‘normal’.” she said.

It is also scary, she said, that anyone allegedly involved in the assassination of a journalist is also still referred to as a “businessman” or a “business mogul”, rather than as a “murder suspect”.

“Nobody should normalise murder, nor should murder be trivialised. Nobody should remain complacent when a journalist is murdered.”

“By working with or for companies owned by these sorts of people, or by voluntarily giving them your custom – whether by just working at a call centre of theirs or simply buying a coffee from one of the establishments they co-own – you are indirectly helping to fund a whole chain of corruption and playing a part in the threat to democracy and to society as a whole.”

She said that people may see things differently “if, like I have, you sat in court mere inches from several men accused of playing a part in your aunt’s horrific assassination.”

“I have witnessed my admirable and stoic grandparents and cousins sitting mere inches from their daughter’s and mother’s alleged murderers, along with other close family members of mine and Daphne’s. No person should ever have to endure that, especially since nobody should ever be assassinated in the first place.”

“It would be Daphne’s 58th birthday on the 26th of August. But we won’t be celebrating Daphne’s birthday with her that day. Some of us will instead be sitting in court facing one of the men charged with her brutal murder. On the day she would have turned 58. We can’t celebrate with Daphne. We can only celebrate her.”

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