One Year On, Anti-Putin Billboards Show Up Over Malta – And Many People Are Not Happy
Marking one year since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, anti-Putin billboards have popped up around Malta – and while the reaction has been quite mixed, it’s safe to say, the vast majority of people are not happy about it.
Today, 24th February, marks the first anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, causing immeasurable harm to citizens and violating international law.
As a commemoration of the day and a reminder that this is still ongoing a full year later, the Ukrainian community in Malta erected a series of billboards, reading “Mr. Putin, you have been killing innocent civilians for a whole year”.
But while Maltese people have been very supportive of victims of the war that found refuge in Malta, many are not happy seeing these billboards, arguing that this goes against Malta’s constitutional stance of neutrality.
A post originating from the local platform Are You Being Served? (Malta and Gozo) Original, calling for the removal of the billboards, has already garnered over 600 reactions and 400 comments.
“Remove those billboards from there, now!” the post reads.
“Let Malta be neutral, we don’t need a war,” one comment reads, with another saying, “We offered them refuge and now they want to include us in the conflict.”
“Are we losing our minds? Who put those there?” others demanded.
“We are only inviting trouble – how has no one from the government or opposition commented on these billboards?
“Remove these billboards. Malta does not have the resources to handle a war, please remove them and take care of citizens.”
“I’m sorry, but this is simply stupid on all levels. Some people are seriously short-sighted.”
Well-known zookeper Anton Rea Cutajar also reacted to the billboards on his public profile, saying “Is this serious? We are against war and in favour of peace but this billboard is unnecessary.”
Meanwhile, others took more of a diplomatic approach to the billboards, saying, “we can show our support differently. Let’s not play someone else’s political game, please. These are to be removed”.
However, some called for more of these billboards to be erected, arguing that was is written is all factual, and that just because Malta is neutral, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t stand up for what is right.
What do you make of these billboards? Have you spotted them around Malta?