Ireland’s rejection of the Lisbon Treaty in a referendum on June 12 will change nothing as far as the functioning of the European Union (EU) is concerned, according to Slovakia’s head of state. The EU will continue working on the basis of those principles and programmes it already has, President Ivan Gašparovič said. Gašparovič thinks re-evaluation of the treaty by Ireland is possible. He accepts the outcome of the popular vote, in which the treaty was turned down by 53.4 to 46.6 percent.
Nonetheless, he said it is not a good sign, and reflects an inability to negotiate and reach agreements within the 27-nation bloc. The president noted that a two-day summit of the European Council started on June 19 in Brussels, bringing together representatives of EU states and, according to him, it will come to a certain decision. He said he cannot imagine that Ireland will be promised exceptions in order to overturn its rejection since a single exception could change the whole system. None of the EU’s members was forced to join the bloc he said, adding that all of them wanted this step and had therefore pledged to meet certain conditions and rules valid in the European Union. In the wake of its rejection in Ireland, the Lisbon Treaty is unlikely to take effect, as planned, on January 1, 2009. SITA
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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19. Jun 2008 at 18:00