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Maria Efimova must be protected from deportation threats to Malta

Protect Whistleblowers!

A statement by a cross-party group of MEPs in support of the Malta corruption whistleblower, Maria Efimova, who - in fear for her own safety after arrest warrants were issued by Malta and Cyprus - handed herself in to Greek police on Monday night in Athens. She could be deported to Malta if the Greek authorities do not grant her asylum.

Whistleblower Maria Efimova is a former employee of Pilatus Bank and a material witness in cases of corruption and money laundering.

Pilatus Bank, independently of Efimova’s testimony, has been exposed as a money laundering outfit for very powerful people in Malta and Azerbaijan. The recent arrest of the Pilatus Bank's Chairman Ali Sadr Hasheminejad in the United States is further evidence of links to criminal activity. 

Pilatus Bank’s complicity with persons at the highest levels of the Maltese government and in particular with Keith Schembri, the Maltese Prime Minister’s chief of staff, is well-established through leaked reports from Malta’s anti-money laundering agency.

The vicious campaign to discredit and vilify Efimova - a Russian national - by the Maltese government that commenced immediately after she revealed herself as the source of investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia is ongoing to this day.

Daphne Caruana Galizia was assassinated on 16th October 2017.  After her killing, Maria Efimova stated that she had fled Malta out of fear for her life and the security of her family, and as the fear and the pressure of arrest warrants grew, she surrendered to the Greek authorities on Monday night.

A statement by the sons of Daphne Caruana Galizia said: “European institutions failed to protect our mother. Now they must protect her sources with the same vigour that should have protected her life. Maria Efimova is not an EU citizen but she faces the same danger. She should be protected - as our mother should have been.”

In view of the above as well as the frivolous nature of the allegations against Maria Efimova, we call on the Greek authorities:

- To ensure that she is not returned to Malta
- To offer asylum to Efimova and her family
- To provide protection and ensure her safety
 
Signed by Members of the European Parliament (MEPs):

AUSTREVICIUS Petras, ALDE
BAYET Hugues, S&D
BILDT CORAZZA Anna Maria, S&D
CASA David, EPP
CHILDERS Nessa, S&D
CICU Salvatore, EPP
DE LANGE Esther, EPP
DURAND Pascal, The GREENS/EFA
ENGEL Frank, EPP
FJELLNER Christofer, EPP
GASBARRA Enrico, S&D
GIEGOLD Sven, The GREENS/EFA
GOMEZ Anna, S&D
HADJIGEORGIOU Takis, GUE/NGL
HÖKMARK Gunnar, EPP
IN'T VELD Sophie, ALDE
JOLY Eva, The GREENS/EFA
KÖSTER Dietmar, S&D
KOULOGLOU Stelios, GUE/NGL
KYLLÖNEN Merja, GUE/NGL
LANGEN Werner, EPP
LE HYARIC Patrick, GUE/NGL
MACOVEI Monica, ECR
MARTIN Edouard, S&D
METSOLA Roberta, EPP
PAGAZAURTUNDÚA Maite, ALDE
ROSATI Dariusz, EPP
SCHIRDEWAN Martin, GUE/NGL
SCHULZE Sven, EPP
TOMC Romana, EPP
Miguel URBAN CRESPO, GUE/NGL
VALLI Marco, EFDD
VANDENKENDELAERE Tom, EPP
VIEU Marrie-Pierre, GUE/NGL
ZAMMIT DIMECH Francis, EPP
ZIMMER Gabriel, GUE/NGL

 

 

GUE/NGL Press Contact: Ben Leung
STB +33 3881 72949| BXL +32 228 32299
mobile +32 470 880 965
benjamin.leung@europarl.europa.eu



 

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