Sunday

19th Aug 2018

French and Dutch treaty referendums should be re-run, says Juncker

If the French and the Dutch reject the EU Constitution on Sunday and Wednesday, they should re-run the referendums, the current president of the EU, Jean-Claude Juncker, has said.

"If at the end of the ratification process, we do not manage to solve the problems, the countries that would have said No, would have to ask themselves the question again", Mr Juncker said in an interview with Belgian daily Le Soir.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

His words come despite a statement by the French prime minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin on Tuesday (24 May) saying that another referendum is "not a perspective that France could accept".

The Luxembourg leader went on to say: "And if, even after the European Council deals with the problem, we do not manage to find the right answer, the treaty will not come into force".

Mr Juncker stressed that a French No would be a "disaster" and excluded the possibility of imminent re-negotiations.

"The idea circulating in France that there could be an immediate re-negotiation (of the treaty) is absolutely unimaginable", he said.

According to Jean-Claude Juncker, it would take "10 to 15 years" for another treaty to be established.

And a rejection of the Constitution would also lead to "external observers" not knowing what direction Europe wants to take anymore, which means that the "economy will not get better with a No", Mr Juncker pointed out.

This is why the ratification process should go on in other countries, even if France says No, the current EU president stressed.

"I would find it extraordinary to say to the other nations that they can stay home, as France has decided for everybody else", Mr Juncker said.

But according to The Times, ministers in the British government do not find it likely that the ratification would go on if both the French and the Dutch say no.

Instead, they believe President Jacques Chirac will have to either promise renegotiation or declare the constitution dead.

And although renegotiation looks doubtful, it is possible that the incoming British presidency might be able to bring into force parts of the constitution that can be enforced without a treaty, such as mechanical changes, like scrapping the six-month rotating presidency of the EU.

Opinion

Why shouldn't Spain re-run its referedum?

Jean-Claude Juncker, the acting president of the Council, has proposed a re-run of referendums on the constitution resulting in a no. But why shouldn't Spain re-run its referendum, asks Danish MEP Jens-Peter Bonde.

Investigation

EU Commission paying too much for iPhones and IT

EUobserver has obtained internal documents and emails from within the European Commission that outline questionable contracts with outside suppliers who appear to be overcharging for goods and services.

News in Brief

  1. Germany and Greece strike deal on taking back migrants
  2. Merkel confronts far-right critics: '2015 will not be repeated'
  3. UN: Predictable disembarkation process urgently needed
  4. Slovenia set to select former comedian as prime minister
  5. Polish president to veto election rule helping big parties
  6. MEPs blast UK 'alphabetical approach' on citizens rights
  7. EU hits back over Salvini's blame for bridge collapse
  8. Poll: Sweden's social democrat-led government set to win again

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. ACCACompany Law Package: Making the Best of Digital and Cross Border Mobility,
  2. IPHRCivil Society Worried About Shortcomings in EU-Kyrgyzstan Human Rights Dialogue
  3. UNESDAThe European Soft Drinks Industry Supports over 1.7 Million Jobs
  4. Mission of China to the EUJointly Building Belt and Road Initiative Leads to a Better Future for All
  5. IPHRCivil society asks PACE to appoint Rapporteur to probe issue of political prisoners in Azerbaijan
  6. ACCASocial Mobility – How Can We Increase Opportunities Through Training and Education?
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersEnergy Solutions for a Greener Tomorrow
  8. UNICEFWhat Kind of Europe Do Children Want? Unicef & Eurochild Launch Survey on the Europe Kids Want
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Countries Take a Stand for Climate-Smart Energy Solutions
  10. Mission of China to the EUChina: Work Together for a Better Globalisation
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersNordics Could Be First Carbon-Negative Region in World
  12. European Federation of Allergy and AirwaysLife Is Possible for Patients with Severe Asthma

Latest News

  1. EU gets record response on 'summertime' consultation
  2. 'Nativism' and the upcoming Swedish and Bavarian elections
  3. Former Malta opposition leader fears for his life
  4. Women shun EU-funded site for female entrepreneurs
  5. Building a Europe more resilient to terrorism
  6. Brexit talks resume as chance of 'no deal' put at 50:50
  7. US trial sheds light on murky Cyprus-Russia links
  8. Burned cars fuel Swedish election debate

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us