Malta – Zero Covid-19 Cases Malta News Briefing – Sunday 13 June 2021

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A 48-year-old man was grievously injured on Sunday in a traffic accident in Xagħra. The police said the accident happened in Sqaq San Marzjan at noon. The motorcyclist was given first aid by a medical team on site and was then taken to Gozo General Hospital by ambulance. – Times of Malta

Political Debates – PL The Government “has the environment at heart”, Prime Minister Robert Abela said on Sunday, adding that this will be shown through the laying of a second interconnector and through the EU Green Deal. “Infrastructure in Malta was a liability. Now, the Government wants to change this situation,” he said. “The growth of the economy and the demand for electricity go hand in hand. The PN either didn’t have enough vision, or it didn’t think that the economy will grow,” he said. Abela remarked that the country is also looking to switch to hydrogen in the coming years in order to ensure that the targets of the EU Green Deal are reached. – Malta Independent

PN – The leader of the Opposition Bernard Grech has said the national broadcaster is being controlled by the Labour government. Speaking during a phone-in interview on NET FM, Grech said that it is becoming “more evident” that government is snatching up the country’s institutions. “If we want to protect the country and freedom of speech, the national broadcaster has to be impartial and truthful,” he said. Development in Malta is needed but cannot be viewed as an absolute right that impinges on other people’s rights to enjoy their property, Opposition leader Bernard Grech said on Sunday.  Grech said “we would be deluding ourselves in thinking that a country can advance without a reasonable level of development, including construction and foreign direct investment”.  He said even small business needed to continually invest and develop.  “The PN believes development is needed. This is not an absolute right that comes to the detriment of other rights. People cannot be allowed to break the law”, Grech said”. – Times of Malta / MaltaToday

No new Covid-19 cases in Malta – Deputy PM Chris Fearne announced that Malta had no new Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours.

Newspaper Review

Malta Today says that Malta’s veto on a sports betting convention is complicating assessment by the Financial Action Task Force. A government official told the paper that the country may have to reverse its position that has stalled the convention for seven years.

The Sunday Times reveals that the former head of the police anti-money laundering unit, Ray Aquilina, will face charges for corruption and tax evasion. Investigations into leaks from the Caruana Galizia case led officers to suspicious activities by the former superintendent.

Illum publishes survey results showing that 74 per cent of the population agrees that clubs and entertainment establishments should open for fully vaccinated people. A fifth of respondents said it is still too early.

The Independent on Sunday speaks with the CEO of the Hotels and Restaurants Association, Andrew Agius Muscat, who warned that shortness of employees in the sector is turning into an emergency.

It-Torċa reports that Malta and Cyprus have successfully negotiated a derogation to recognises a hydrogen pipeline as a project of common EU interest. Energy Minister Miriam Dalli said the development will connect the country to a future hydrogen network.

Il-Mument quotes PN Leader Bernard Grech who said that the reported €120,000 termination package paid to former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat was unacceptable in a ‘normal country’. He criticised the government for hiding the figure.

Malta Today says that 58 per cent of people in the 16 to 35 age group disagree with the decriminalisation of abortion while are third are in favour. Nationally, 18 per cent support decriminalising the termination of pregnancy and two-thirds do not.

The Independent on Sunday publishes an interview with founding member of Din L-Art Ħelwa Għawdex, Daniel Cilia, who said that authorities are not doing enough to conserve the natural and cultural characteristics of Gozo.  

Illum carries an interview with Moviment Graffitti activist Andre Callus who accused authorities of serving the interests of large developers. He said that local plans are already in place for construction policies to be modified.

It-Torċa speaks with agricultural workers who raised concerns about the threat of microplastics to food production. They said that there are currently no rules to control the disintegration of plastics in soils.

The Sunday Times reports that a couple lost over €90,000 after their business emails were targeted by a phishing attack. The scammers hacked into their email accounts and posed as their suppliers to demand payments for services.

Il-Mument says that employees at the Public Broadcasting Services are concerned about interference from Castille in their work. The paper claims that insiders revealed a sense of demotivation and frustration with the situation. 

Morning Briefing


Malta successfully negotiates derogation allowing pipeline project recognition as Project of Common Interest: Malta has successfully negotiated a derogation to ensure that the hydrogen-ready pipeline is recognised as a Project of Common Interest by the European Union. The negotiations were led by Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Sustainable Development Miriam Dalli.

The importance of the derogation is that it seeks to ensure that the project is eligible for EU funding under the new legal framework.

The derogation agreed upon the Energy Council meeting in Luxembourg will apply for Malta and Cyprus. The EU energy ministers met on Friday to reach a general approach on the Review of the Trans-European Energy Regulation before negotiations with the other institutions kick off. This agreement must now be confirmed during the trialogues.

Man confesses to killing compatriot, pleads not guilty: A Ghanian man arrested following a murder in Marsa confessed that he had stabbed Isaac Kyere in Marsa, but pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges when he was arraigned on Saturday. 23-year-o Kyere was stabblded to death after a fight broke out in Triq it-Tigrija.

Man dies after falling in sea: A 62-year-old Englishman lost his life after falling into the sea. The incident took place on Saturday afternoon, in the area of Triq it-Trunċiera, Qawra.

District Police officers immediately went to the scene, and initial investigations show that when he was on the rocks, the man appears to have lost his balance and fell into the sea. Despite rescue attempts, he was pronounced dead on site.

Covid-19 Update: Two new coronavirus cases were reported on Saturday, with four patients recovering. This lowers the active tally to 62, while more than 256,000 persons have now been fully vaccinated, with two doses of Astra Zeneca, Moderna or Pfizer or one shot of Johnson and Johnson.

CDE News