‘We Are Not Alone’: A Message From Daphne Caruana Galizia’s Family

By | October 31, 2019 at 1:38 pm | No comments | News

by Amy Mallia, Daphne’s niece

I was at school the day my aunt, Daphne Caruana Galizia, was assassinated. In class I was asked what I’d like to be in the future. I remember saying without hesitation that I’d like to be a journalist like my aunt, only to go home a few hours later and find out she had been murdered. It now seems like I had known something would happen to Daphne, but my answer remains the same. Daphne was and still is a role model for me. She lived by what she believed in, and she never, ever gave in.

These past two years have been a blur of vigils, meetings, protests, and news reports, of trying to make sense of articles dripping with hate and false accusations against my family, of sometimes being verbally abused in the street, of being told one time at school that it would have been better if someone had placed a bomb under my car seat too. This shouldn’t be normal, but then again Malta is not a normal country right now. If it were, Daphne would not have been killed.

I was lucky enough to have known Daphne personally as I was growing up, a privilege that will now be denied to her grandchildren. I shared many memories with her in the 15 years she was in my life. Memories filled with love, laughter and shared interests. I wish she was still here. She deserved to have a longer life. She should have been able to see her family grow, to see all the places she wanted to visit, and to write what she wanted to write. She deserved the better version of Malta she was fighting for until her last moment.

When Daphne was killed, we were left without one of the few brave journalists in Malta who would write what she thought we had the right to know. She once wrote:“I cannot bear the thought of injustice, still less the reality of it. It’s true that life is unfair and that much of it can’t be helped, but where I can do anything to avoid unfairness or to set it straight, then I will.”

Justice for Daphne will not come easily, not when our Minister for Justice, who is supposed to protect our rights, orders the daily clearance of the protest memorial in Malta’s capital, Valletta. But to those who ordered Daphne’s assassination we say: you will not get away with what you did. No matter what money, power or position you hold, you can’t escape the truth and you cannot erase Daphne’s memory.

Daphne’s life was cut short, but her legacy lives on through her strong family, especially my grandparents Rose and Michael, and my cousins, Daphne’s sons Matthew, Andrew and Paul. It lives on through everyone who keeps her memory alive and who continues to fight for justice despite the personal risks. And it lives on through those journalists who continue Daphne’s work in Malta and elsewhere, defending everyone’s right to know, reminding us that true democracy can only exist if journalists are able to work freely.

The past two years have been difficult and often lonely, but it is comforting to know that we are not alone. To the many people around the world who are campaigning for justice for Daphne, including the organizers of this event, everyone who is here today and the many others who would have liked to be here too, our heartfelt thanks.

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