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Malta: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: Republic of Malta
conventional short form: Malta
local long form: Repubblika ta' Malta
local short form: Malta
CapitalValletta Valletta
geographic coordinates: 35 53 N, 14 30 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions68 localities (Il-lokalita); Attard, Balzan, Birgu, Birkirkara, Birzebbuga, Bormla, Dingli, Fgura, Floriana, Fontana, Ghajnsielem, Gharb, Gharghur, Ghasri Ghaxaq, Gudja, Gzira, Hamrun, Iklin, Imdina, Imgarr, Imqabba, Imsida, Imtarfa, Isla, Kalkara, Kercem, Kirkop, Lija, Luqa, Marsa, Marsaskala, Marsaxlokk, Mellieha, Mosta, Munxar, Nadur, Naxxar, Paola, Pembroke, Pieta, Qala, Qormi, Qrendi, Rabat, Rabat (Ghawdex), Safi, San Giljan/Saint Julian, San Gwann/Saint John, San Lawrenz/Saint Lawrence, Sannat, San Pawl il-Bahar/Saint Paul's Bay, Santa Lucija/Saint Lucia, Santa Venera/Saint Venera, Siggiewi, Sliema, Swieqi, Tarxien, Ta' Xbiex, Valletta, Xaghra, Xewkija, Xghajra, Zabbar, Zebbug, Zebbug (Ghawdex), Zejtun, Zurrieq
Constitutionmany previous; latest adopted 21 September 1964; amended many times, last in 2011 (2011)
Executive branchchief of state: President Marie-Louise Coleiro PRECA (since 4 April 2014)
head of government: Prime Minister Joseph MUSCAT (since 11 March 2013)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
elections: president appointed by a resolution of the House of Representatives for a five-year term; appointment last held on 4 April 2014 (next to be held by April 2019); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or leader of a majority coalition usually appointed prime minister by the president for a five-year term; the deputy prime minister appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
election results: Marie-Louise Coleiro PRECA appointed president; Joseph MUSCAT elected prime minister
Flag descriptiontwo equal vertical bands of white (hoist side) and red; in the upper hoist-side corner is a representation of the George Cross, edged in red; according to legend, the colors are taken from the red and white checkered banner of Count Roger of Sicily who removed a bi-colored corner and granted it to Malta in 1091; an uncontested explanation is that the colors are those of the Knights of Saint John who ruled Malta from 1530 to 1798; in 1942, King George VI of the United Kingdom awarded the George Cross to the islanders for their exceptional bravery and gallantry in World War II; since independence in 1964, the George Cross bordered in red has appeared directly on the white field
Independence21 September 1964 (from the UK)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Court of Appeal (consists of either 1 or 3 judges); Constitutional Court (consists of 3 judges); Court of Criminal Appeal (consists of either 1 or 3 judges)
judge selection and term of office: Court of Appeal and Constitutional Court judges appointed by the president, usually upon the advice of the prime minister; judges of both courts serve until age 65
subordinate courts: Civil Court (divided into the General Jurisdiction Section, Family Section, and Voluntary Section); Criminal Court; Court of Magistrates; Gozo Courts (for the islands of Gozo and Comino}
Legal systemmixed legal system of English common law and civil law (based on the Roman and Napoleonic civil codes)
Legislative branchunicameral House of Representatives (normally 65 seats; members are elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation by the Single Transferrable Vote (STV) to serve five-year terms; note - the parliament elected in 2013 is composed of 69 seats; when the political party winning an absolute majority of first-count votes (or a plurality of first-count votes in an election where only two parties are represented in parliament) does not win an absolute majority of seats, the constitution provides for the winning party to be awarded additional number of seats in parliament to guarantee it an absolute majority; in the event that more than two parties are represented in parliament, with none acquiring the absolute majority of votes, the party winning the majority of seats prevails
elections: last held on 9 March 2013 (next to be held by March 2018)
election results: percent of vote by party - PL 54.8%, PN 43.3%, other 1.9%; seats by party - PL 39, PN 30
note: in 2009, provisions in the law were made for communities with elected representatives to be established within localities and for an elected chairperson to sit in on council meetings
International organization participationAustralia Group, C, CD, CE, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EMU, EU, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NSG, OAS (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, PFP, Schengen Convention, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, Union Latina (observer), UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National holidayIndependence Day, 21 September (1964); Republic Day, 13 December (1974)
Political pressure groups and leadersAlliance of Liberal Democrats Malta (Alleanza Liberali-Demokratika Malta) of ALDM (for divorce, abortion, gay marriage, women's rights)
Together for a Better Environment (Flimkien Ghal-Ambjent Ahjar) or FAA (pro-environment)
other: environmentalists
Political parties and leadersAlternativa Demokratika/Alliance for Social Justice or AD (Green Party) (Arnold CASSOLA)
Labor Party or PL (Joseph MUSCAT)
Nationalist Party or PN (Simon BUSUTTIL)
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Government typerepublic
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Marisa Maria Louise MICALLEF (since 22 August 2013)
chancery: 2017 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: (1) (202) 462-3611 through 3612
FAX: (1) (202) 387-5470
consulate(s): New York
National anthemname: "L-Innu Malti" (The Maltese Anthem)
lyrics/music: Dun Karm PSAILA/Robert SAMMUT
note: adopted 1945; the anthem is written in the form of a prayer
International law organization participationaccepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)Maltese cross
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Gina ABERCROMBIE-WINSTANLEY (since 18 April 2012)
embassy: Ta' Qali National Park, Attard, ATD 4000
mailing address: 5800 Valetta Place, Dulles, VA 20189
telephone: (356) 2561 4000
FAX: (356) 2124 3229