Daphne Caruana Galizia’s assassination and the rule of law in Maltaand beyond: ensuring that the whole truth emerges...Sos Avetisyan, Armenia
Rapporteur Omtzigh, ladies and gentlemen, honorable chairperson.
In our previous session, I have already addressed the question ofcorruption and its pervasive effect on democracy and rule of law in thishemicycle. I want to thank Mr. Omtzigh, for his excellent, precise andhonest report, which uncovers a singular yet important chain of theinterplay between authoritarianism and corruption.Daphne Caruana Galiza, a name that we should not forget in thishemicycle or in home countries or elsewhere, stood for what is right, whatis ethical and what is good for common people. She dared to open the eyesof the public on corruption, and how it erodes democracy and rule of law inMalta. For that on October 16 2017, this brave woman was assassinatedwith a car bomb.When we discussed the report of Mr. Van de Vart about the Azerbaijanilaundromat in this hemicycle, our colleagues where quick disown that oneof the key sources of the global corruption stems from Azerbaijan. Theargument was that a country should not be accused of such crime,fortunately, in this report concrete names are singled out. I give you names,the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, the daughters of Azerbaijanipresident, the Azerbaijani Minister of Emergency Situation, the Minister ofEnergy, who were affiliated with the companies with shares in the infamousPilatus Bank mentioned in the Panama Papers. This bank was thenregistered in Malta for covering up illicit construction and energy deals.I underline this, because the corruption is never about the common people.I underline this because it is exactly about the corrupt political and businesselites, which will not stop on their own. They will buy influence in otherwisedemocratic polities, subvert them for their needs and use this or thatcountry a springboard for sponsoring illegal enrichment.The improvement of the democracy and rule of law in Malta is important.The full, comprehensive and transparent investigation of Daphna’sassassination is paramount. This is single case yet a milestone for
determining whether we as parliamentarians are able to protect thefreedom of speech and journalists at large or not.The instruments that we have at hand, namely GRECO and MONEYVALshould be strengthened in order not to repetition of such cases. Thereshould be concrete mechanisms for protecting the journalists, here theinternational NGO’s such as investigative networks, journalists sansfrontier, remain our key allies.Our struggle against the corruption should not be confined to one or twocountries, it should be comprehensive, unyielding and principle in all thecases. This is the only way that we can ensure that no other car-bombs aretraveling to silence journalists.