Civil Society group Repubblika has written to President George Vella asking for his protection in view of an “intimidation campaign from the Mafia clique”.
The NGO, which has been leading protests calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and justice for the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, said its members do not feel protected by the Police Commissioner and the entire force.
Protesters had received threats, including death threats, it said.
In a statement, the NGO called on the president to intervene with the government to restrain confrontation and confirm that its protests are not violent. It also wants the president to ensure that the Police Commissioner respects the law.
Repubblika said that over the past 26 months, “we were active with constant protests asking for truth and justice after the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia."
It added that as citizen activists campaigning for the rule of law "it is not only our right to protest, but also our duty.”
Government ministers were publicly accusing the NGO and its members of violence, criminality and of trying to bring back brutality prevalent in the 1980s, it said.
“As a direct consequence of these reports, we are receiving private and public messages insulting us, intimidating and threatening violent acts against us, including death threats. These are coming from people on social media who are identifiable as well as through anonymous profiles.
“In the past, when we experienced threats, we sought and found protection from the police. However, in view of the police statement lying about our protest on Friday, we fear that the Police Commissioner is not willing to protect us from those who want to hurt us, despite the goodwill of the majority of the police officers,” the NGO said.
The civil society NGO asked for the President’s protection from the “Mafia clique that has captured our country” who in the past targeted their hate campaigns at Daphne Caruana Galizia. “When this was not enough to silence her, they killed her.”
It said they had the option to remain silent to avoid this violence but that would mean that the clique continued their smear campaign.
“We assure you that despite the threats and fear we are experiencing, we will remain committed to the interests of the community. We are not looking for money, recognition or power. We are asking for a country where truth and rule of law reign, so that our children can live without fear,” it said.
The civil society NGO is organising another protest to be held on Monday at 7.30pm in Valletta.