President of Malta George Vella called on the Maltese diaspora to follow closely developments regarding the setting up by the Presidency of the Foundation for National Unity and to contribute to Malta’s social and political transition. The President was addressing guests at an event organised by the Maltese embassy in Rome to celebrate Malta’s Independence Day.
Relations between Malta and Italy continue to flourish and embody the historical friendship and deep-rooted cooperation at the diplomatic, commercial, cultural, and people-to-people level, President Vella said. The sustained and open dialogue at both the bilateral and multilateral levels is built on mutual trust and recognition. Year after year, the two neighbouring countries continue to realise that cooperation continues to be at the core of their common future – both within the European Union and as regional players within the Mediterranean region and further south.
On the latest developments in Malta, the President said that, as is necessary and normal in every society and reflecting modern-day realities, Malta has been experiencing several changes to its social fabric and is undergoing important reforms meant to strengthen the rule of law. “I too, as President of the Republic, have played and will continue contributing to this process, as guided by the Constitution of Malta and in line with the parameters allocated to my Office,” he affirmed. “In recent days, I have taken full note of the recommendations contained in the Report of the Public Inquiry on the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, and have already started working on the areas where I have the authority to act. We are at a critical juncture that necessitates an inclusive and open dialogue across the whole spectrum of Maltese society which at the same time underlines the important nexus between the State, the institutions, and the people, both Maltese and all foreigners living among us.” In this light, he referred to the several initiatives taken so far by the Presidency in the current year, aimed to bring together and in closer dialogue professionals, academics, politicians, journalists, civil society organisations, and the people in general.
The Maltese President expressed his thankfulness to Italian President Sergio Mattarella for hosting this year’s Arraiolos Group Meeting and for reigniting precious dialogue between Presidents of European Union member states. He also thanked him for his long-standing service to promote regional cooperation and, as much as one can, peace. As President Mattarella will be relinquishing his office in the coming months, President Vella took the opportunity to join the Italian people in expressing gratitude for his services to the Italian Republic, the European Project, and his statesmanship in guiding and leading the nation with proven wisdom.
Earlier, President Vella held a bilateral meeting with President Mattarella at the Quirinale Palace. The two Heads of State exchanged views on the present situation in the Mediterranean, particularly in North Africa. They had a very detailed discussion on Libya and discussed migration and climate change as common regional issues.