The European Parliament convened this evening to debate the state of the rule of law in Malta, the second such debate since the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia last month.
As with the first debate, Caruana Galizia’s family were present in the Strasbourg hall as MEPs from all political groups lined up to lambast the Maltese government and institutions, as well as the country’s taxation system and sale-of-citizenship scheme.
One MEP demanded the European Commission suspend its friendship with Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, while another compared the situation in Malta to the Netflix TV series Narcos.
Yet European Commission vice-president Frans Timmermans made it clear from the start that he has no general concerns on Malta’s non-compliance on rule of law issues.
Here’s a summary, in quotes, of what went down in the European Parliament tonight:
1. No general concerns about Malta’ – Frank Timmermans, EC vice-president
“The rights of a