Today, 16 January, English PEN joined Reporters Without Borders and fellow freedom of expression and anti-corruption organisations to gather for a vigil to mark three months since the tragic murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, a courageous investigative journalist killed by a car bomb in Malta. Her murder highlights the extensive risks faced by journalists around the world, and the need to end the vicious cycle of violence against journalists and impunity for their attackers. The vigil in Central London was co-sponsored by our colleagues at ARTICLE 19, the Committee to Protect Journalists, Index on Censorship, PEN International and Transparency International.
Antonia Byatt, Interim Director, English PEN, said:
Today we come together to pay tribute to Daphne Caruana Galizia and to stand in solidarity with her family. Daphne’s murder was an attempt to silence her but we will not allow that to happen. We will continue to share her words and her work, and to call for a full and impartial investigation into her death.
We were honoured to read the following statement, written especially for the vigil by Daphne’s family, and will continue to stand with them as they fight for justice.
A message from Daphne Caruana Galizia’s family for the London vigil marking three months since her assassination
Thank you for being here today.
We, Daphne Caruana Galizia’s family, are grateful to all the organisations which have helped make this vigil happen and we are grateful for your supporting our fight for justice for her.
Daphne Caruana Galizia was persecuted and threatened in life. Since her death, there have been countless attempts to discredit her, to erase her memory, and to destroy her work.
Her assassins and their mandators and intermediaries must be found and face justice. She died for our right to know. With that knowledge, we now have a duty to do justice by her.
But the fight for justice is not only about finding those responsible for killing Daphne Caruana Galizia. It is a fight for everyone’s right to know, to learn, and to understand.
Journalists are killed for what they write. What they write remains after them, as does their reputation and credibility. So those who harassed a journalist in life have the same reasons to harass them in death. They undermine the journalist’s reputation. They try to destroy their credibility, and they try to erase their memory.
This is happening to Daphne Caruana Galizia. This is why this vigil is being held today. Daphne’s memory and her work need to be kept alive.
When journalists are harassed and murdered with impunity, it is not an attack on media freedom alone. It is an attack on all of us, a crime against our dignity and freedom as citizens.
Eternal vigilance is the price to pay for freedom. But journalists should not have to pay that price with their lives.
An end to impunity for crimes against journalists means they should only need to raise the alarm once. And they should not do that by dying.
When a journalist dies, it raises an alarm. But those alarms don’t ring only for journalists. They ring for all of us.
You heard the final alarm Daphne Caruana Galizia sent out into the world and now you are taking action.
By being here today, you are taking a stand – against impunity, against corruption, against the forces that took Daphne Caruana Galizia away from us.
Thank you, all of you. If everyone follows your example, things will begin to change. Then there can be justice and Daphne Caruana Galizia will not have died in vain.
Please join us in showing your support by sharing their words with friends and colleagues and on social media with the following hashtags: #DaphneCaruanaGalizia #JusticeForDaphne #NoImpunity #EndImpunity
If you would like to send a message of support, please do so via [email protected]