'Hate speech’ has no place in society, leaders agree

President, Prime Minister, leader of the Opposition and Archbishop remember victims of truck attack in Berlin

Photo by James Bianchi/MediaToday
Photo by James Bianchi/MediaToday

The victims of the Monday attack on a Christmas market in Berlin, which left 12 dead and dozens injured, were remembered by the country’s leaders on Tuesday at the launch of the Milied Flimkien activities in Valletta.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and Opposition leader Simon Busuttil said that while everyone was gathered to celebrate Christmas, they should not forget the people in Germany who were visiting a Christmas market when they fell victim to the actions of one man, fuelled by hatred and division.

Muscat said that he, like Busuttil, President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca and Archbishop Charles Scicluna, agreed that the people who incited hatred should be shunned and not be allowed to spread their message in our society.

Photo by James Bianchi/MediaToday
Photo by James Bianchi/MediaToday

He said Malta would show – come Monday – just how people could forget their differences and come together once again in a celebration of generosity and solidarity during the yearly telethon L-Istrina.

Busuttil said that attacks like those on Monday should make people appreciate more the security they – and the country – enjoyed.

Scicluna said that he, like the others, was often a target for malicious attacks but insisted that despite disagreement and differing opinions, they could all agree that there was no space in society for such ‘hate speeches’.

Coleiro Preca, in a deviation from the other guests, chose not to deliver a speech but invited a representative of the Years 5 and 6 classes at the San Bastjan primary school in Qormi to read a message the students had presented her on Monday.

She said she was sure the others would agree with the sentiment of the students’ message, which called for a greater commitment by public figures to deliver social justice and to pave the way for future generations.

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