Maltese PM Resigns 2 Years After Reporter’s Murder
A murdered investigative journalist... a corruption case… and now, the resignation of the prime minister. This is the story of the Daphne Project, so far.
‘She was relentless, she was fearless’
It all began with a murder, one Monday in the fall. The most famous investigative journalist in Malta, Daphne Caruana Galizia, was killed when a bomb was detonated under her car, on October 16, 2017. Half an hour before she died, she published a blog post that incriminated the chief of staff of Malta’s prime minister, Joseph Muscat.
Journalists from all over the world have joined forces to launch The Daphne Project. One of the investigations that they took up was into a mysterious company called 17 Black. One year after the Daphne Project's revelations, on November 20, 2019, Yorgen Fenech was arrested as he prepared to leave the country aboard his yacht. “I just watched his team’s jaws drop to the floor. She was obviously killed because of something that she had written about. There is just no other way. She was relentless, she was fearless. She was a very high-profile reporter in Malta, she was very well known and if she could be killed in this violent way inside an EU member state, then who’s gonna be next?” Matthew Caruana Galizia tells Brut.
In a statement, Fenech implicated several high-level officials. Most notably, he said that Keith Schembri, the prime minister's chief of staff, was complicit in the murder. Schembri was arrested, and then released 36 hours later. This sparked protests across Malta. Among the protesters was one of Caruana Galizia's sons. On December 1, 2019, more than two years after Caruana Galizia's murder, the prime minister announced his resignation. But he said that the resignation would only take effect in January 2020, once his successor had been designated. The investigation into Daphne Caruana Galizia's murder remains unfinished to this day. A complete list of those who ordered the killing has yet to be established.