Two years after the murder of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, a volley of resignations has rocked Prime Minister Joseph Muscat’s government.
His chief aide, Keith Schembri, quit amid reports he was being questioned by police, and Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi also resigned.
The Economy Minister, Chris Cardona, took the decision to suspend himself.
Image caption: Protesters have repeatedly demanded government action over the journalist’s murder, Image copyright REUTERS
Opposition MPs heckled the prime minister with shouts of “mafia” when he walked into parliament.
The three men who stepped aside from Mr Muscat’s government on Tuesday all deny wrongdoing.
Under mounting pressure, the prime minister said he would not speculate on whether Mr Schembri was being questioned or what any questioning could be about.
Malta’s business community has said the unfolding inquiry reveals the extent of damage caused to the country.
In a statement, the chamber of commerce said it had become clear “the extent to which criminal activity had infiltrated the circles of power, and operated unperturbed for years”.