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‘Desperate Need Of Police Patrolling’: Woman Recounts Being Mimicked By Man On Morning Sliema Front Walk

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Lawyer and founder of the FIDEM charity foundation Sabine Cabourdin has highlighted a “desperate need for police patrolling” in the areas of Sliema and St Julian’s after she was harassed along the Sliema front.

“Unless we have more police patrolling along the promenades all over Malta not only Sliema and St Julians, we are through omission aiding and abetting perpetrators to carry out more indecent assaults and other types of physical or mental abuse or even stalking,” Cabourdin told Lovin Malta.

She took to Facebook yesterday morning to speak about what she had just experienced while on a walk along the front, where a man started to mimic her every move.

“This morning at around 8.30 am as I was walking along the Sliema front a man mimicked my every move for a good 2 to 3 minutes,” she wrote.

“As I picked up my pace, he picked up his pace, as I slowed my pace to see what he would do – he slowed down just like me, I stopped, he stopped. I walked again he walked again, I walked hurriedly, he walked hurriedly,” she said.

She proceeded to recall how she was well aware of his antics and kept doing different things to confirm that he was indeed mimicking her. 

“I stopped walking altogether purposely stood by a few people and took a photo of the sea. He stopped by my side and mimicked me. By this time, I started to feel intimidated, and my heart skipped a couple of beats. Thankfully it was the last of his copycat acts,” she explained.

All this occurred in broad daylight, and the woman highlighted that “at 8.30am the Sliema promenade is well alive and kicking.”

Nonetheless, it did not stop the man from intimidating her.

“In the aftermath of the brutal animalistic murder, I hoped to spot a couple of wardens or police patrolling the area along with the St. Julian’s and Sliema promenade,” she said.

“Sliema and St Julians are in desperate need of police patrolling. How many more injuries and fatalities before we do something about it?” she said, directing the question towards Minister Byron Camilleri.

“I don’t want to play victim, it’s not about me or my episode, and neither is it solely related to gender-based violence. Although yes as a woman I feel the urgent need to do something about gender-based physical violence, enough has been said in the past two weeks,” she told the newsroom.

She reflected back on an opinion piece that she wrote a few weeks back, where comments under her article and under women activist articles reflect the very essence of the problem.

“Some men claim that even they are abused mentally and/or physically by their partners. These men should be given a platform to be heard out and given due attention. There are many NGOs and women activities safeguarding women’s rights. It’s about time men stand up to be counted too. Why not?”

“We should advocate for a zero-tolerance approach to physical and mental abuse in any shape or form. There are way too many assaults going on irrespective of gender, age and sexual orientation,” she said.

She also recounted a story that happened just a few weeks back when an elderly relative was harassed by an intoxicated man.

“A few weeks back a relative who lives in Sliema had their doorway blocked by a totally intoxicated chap. Asking us whether we wanted to smoke a joint?”

“Too many of these episodes – we’re sitting on another time bomb and I fear another Paulina case will reoccur if safety is not dealt with ASAP.” 

Among enforcement methods that can be implemented she mentioned, surveillance cameras as well as police and wardens continuously patrolling especially around the time of dusk, dawn and nighttime.

Have you ever experienced anything similar? Send over your story to [email protected] if you are interested in speaking about it 

Do you agree that more police patrolling is needed? 

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When Sasha (formerly known as Sasha Tas-Sigar) is not busy writing about environmental injustice, she's probably fighting for women's rights. Follow her at @saaxhaa on Instagram, and send her anything related to the environment, art, and women's rights at [email protected]

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