There have been 21 racist hate crimes in Malta since the start of 2019, Home Affairs Michael Farrugia has revealed, with the country still coming to grips with the shocking murder of an Ivorian migrant earlier in the year.
Up until last year, Malta was one of five EU countries that did not collect any data on hate crimes, which was subject to criticism to EU authorities.
Any offence increases by one or two degrees if it motivated, wholly or in part, by hatred against a person or a particular group, whether that’s on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, race, or religious belief.
Racial hatred can apply to a number of offences, be that assault, hate speech, or theft.
Cisse Souleymane was killed while walking down a country road in Ħal Far on 6th April. Two young soldiers, Francesco Fenech, 21, and Lorin Scicluna, 22, were charged with the racially motivated murder.
They have also been charged with a separate racially motivated hit-and-run incident earlier in the year.
The pair have pleaded not guilty, each claiming that the other perpetrated the attacks.