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MaltaToday 10 May 2020

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Malta rattles French, Germans with Irini 'bomb' MATTHEW VELLA MALTA'S prime minister Robert Abe- la yesterday expected phone-calls from Europe's two most powerful leaders. But the scheduled calls from German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emanuel Macron did not take place. It was a day of reckoning inside the European Council: Malta had vetoed EU funds for an important naval opera- tion close to French interests in Libya. Operation Irini, the EU naval mission tasked to enforce an arms embargo in Libya, was launched just months ago. But Malta this week announced it will with- draw its participation, with Armed Forces personnel having been the sole boarding team on the opera- tion. The move, a sop to Turkey, which is shipping weapons to the UN-recognised Government of Na- tional Accord, is intended at encouraging the GNA to come down hard on human traffickers and stem flows of irregular migration to Malta. But the French support the strongman Khalifa Haftar, who is getting his weap- ons over the Egyptian border, and air support from the United Arab Emirates – something Irini cannot stop. News in MaltaToday on Friday of the Maltese withdrawal from Irini prompt- ed a lot of questions inside the EU's Politico-Military Group, where mili- tary reps hold preparatory meetings on defence and security. During the break, Maltese representatives were ac- costed by their Dutch, Luxembourgish and Italian colleagues who said Malta's withdrawal had been "the bomb of the day". STAY IN, STAY SAFE, WE ARE IN THIS TOGETHER WWW.MALTATODAY.COM.MT/COVID19 Normality still far away, virus expert PAGE 3 COVID-19 WARNING Merkel and Macron schedule calls with Abela over Malta veto on Operation Irini JAMES DEBONO THE moment people start letting their guard down by not adhering to social distancing rules and basic norms like washing hands and not touching faces, the COVID-19 virus will strike back in a second wave which can be far more lethal than the first in terms of loss of life, warns Chris Bar- bara. COME SANITISE WITH ME How travel changes PAGE 4 COVID-19 will mean digital health certificates and payments, and contact- tracing apps mapping our movements 14-15 maltatoday €1.95 SUNDAY • 10 MAY 2020 • ISSUE 1071 • PUBLISHED EVERY WEDNESDAY AND SUNDAY INTERVIEW MT2 ADRIAN DELIA MT2 8-9 Man dies after stun gun, sedation used in disturbance complaint MATTHEW AGIUS MAGISTRATE Yana Micallef Stafrace is leading an inquiry in- to the death of a man who had just been subdued with a stun gun by law enforce- ment personnel and administered a seda- tive. In a statement yes- terday, the police said that on Friday evening at around 7pm, po- lice officers were dis- patched to deal with a report of a man on a roof in Zabbar, who was throwing objects at passers-by. PAGE 4 BREAKING BREAD COVID will change the way we eat out. Early booking recommended PAGE 12 LADIES OF THE LOCKDOWN Relax mums. We don't need pandemic superwomen... PGS 10-11 Robert Abela, with French President Emanuel Macron (right) Talk to us | 2131 2020 | All loans are subject to normal bank lending criteria, credit approval by the Bank and a credit agreement. Further terms and conditions are available from Issued by Bank of Valletta p.l.c., 58, Triq San Żakkarija, Il-Belt Valletta VLT 1130. Bank of Valletta p.l.c. is a public limited company regulated by the MFSA and is licensed to carry out the business of banking in terms of the Banking Act (Cap. 371 of the Laws of Malta). KEEP YOUR BUSINESS STRONG FINANCING FOR BUSINESS BOV MDB COVID-19 ASSIST

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