Malta is Capital of non-Cultural Europe

Both La Valetta (Malta) and Leeuwarden (The Netherlands) are European Capital of Culture 2018. One would expect that culture, one of man's defining achievements, would be able to transcend borders and not create discord.Not so.

Because discord is exactly what the organisation Valletta 2018 (V18) has created. Writing on Facebook, Jason Micallef, the chairman of the Valletta 2018 Foundation, mocked the immortalised last words of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, who was assassinated by a car bomb in October 2017.

Caruana Galizia’s very last blogpost, uploaded minutes before her murder, ended with the unexpectedly premonitory phrase “There are crooks everywhere you look now. The situation is desperate”. But, posting a photo of the 2018 St Patrick’s Day celebrations, Jason Micallef wrote: “The situation is desperate. There is happy people every where you look [sic].” The man has a truly sick mind.
As a result, Leeuwarden-Fryslân 2018, has decided not to send any official representatives to Malta as long as the V18 organisation “fails to distance itself from the offensive tone which particularly relates to the relatives of the murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galazia, the decision remains in place. The ideology of a European Capital of Culture should not be discredited. It is our responsibility, as well as that of other European Capitals of Culture, to defend these values."
The Leeuwarden-Fryslân 2018 Foundation has also decided not to send any official invitations to Malta-Valletta2018 until further notice.

"LF2018 believes that V18 representatives have put the values of a European Capital of Culture under pressure as a result of the way in which the V18 organisation has presented itself in the (social) media regarding the slain journalist. The projects within the Valletta2018 collaboration program will continue to be supported; the cultural dialogue therefore remains in place as far as LF2018 is concerned."

In an earlier statement, LF2018 has already stated that every attack on artistic freedom, freedom of the press and freedom of expression is reprehensible; "these hard-won freedoms also form the basis for a democratic constitutional state."

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