Karate in Malta officially commenced way back in 1972 under the patronage of the 41st Commando Group stationed on the island. The style practised was Wado Ryu and the first instructer was Edge Carter. In 1979, the style of Karate practiced in Malta was changed to Shotokan and subsequently, the Malta Karate Association was formed. The first foreign technical instructor was Sensei Takahashi (7th Dan), who was later replaced by Sensei Colin Williams (7 th Dan). In 1998, the association was transformed into a Federation and since 1999 the MKF's Foreign Technical Consultant has been Sensei Santo Torre (7th Dan), who is also the Italian National Coach in Kata for Juniors. As a result of the International Olympic Committee's recognition of the World Karate Federation, the MKF became a full affiliated member of the Malta Olympic Committee (MOC). Presently, the Malta Karate Federation has 7 clubs, which are located in Birkirkara, Fgura, Mgarr, Rabat, Paola, Pembroke and San Gwann. The MKF now has its own local instructors, examiners and referees and is affiliated to the largest Karate body in the world, namely the World Karate Federation. The world governing body with its 172 member countries, and an estimated 20 million participating member athletes, renders the WKF as probably the strongest and most accepted Martial Arts Organisation in the world.