Saturday

17th Nov 2018

Brussels calls for Lisbon treaty ratification to continue

  • Participation in the Irish referendum was 53.13 percent (Photo: EUobserver)

The European Commission has called for ratification of the Lisbon treaty to continue, despite the No result in Ireland's referendum.

"This vote should not be seen as a vote against the EU… [It] has not solved the problems which the Lisbon Treaty is designed to solve," commission president Jose Manuel Barroso said in Brussels on Friday (13 June).

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

"The ratification process is made up of 27 national processes, 18 Member States have already approved the Treaty, and the European Commission believes that the remaining ratifications should continue to take their course," he added.

According to final results released on Friday afternoon (13 June), 53.4 percent of Irish people voted against the EU's Lisbon treaty in Thursday's referendum, while 46.6 percent voted in favour.

Participation was at 53.13 percent.

Nevertheless, Mr Barroso said he believed "the treaty is alive" and "we should go on and try to find a solution."

It is "important now that the EU does not fall again in depression and does not forget there are other issues to deal with," he added.

In a joint statement later on, France and Germany also called for the ratification of the Lisbon treaty to continue.

"The ratification procedure has already been achieved in 18 countries. Therefore we hope that the other member states will continue the process," the Franco-German declaration reads.

Britain has already said it would press ahead with the ratification, according to the BBC.

Certain politicians and analysts have started floating other possible scenarios however, with some – such as French prime minister Francois Fillon – saying that the Lisbon treaty is dead if one member state rejects it.

Other suggested alternatives include finalising the ratification in all remaining member states and finding a "legal arrangement" with Ireland – as suggested by French EU minister Jean-Pierre Jouyet, or making the Irish vote again on the document at a later point in time – as it happened with the Nice treaty referendum in Ireland in 2001 and 2002.

In any case, the issue will feature high on EU leaders' agenda when they meet in Brussels next week (19-20 June).

They will then expect Irish prime minister Brian Cowen to "explain the reasons for the rejection of the treaty by the Irish people [as well as] discuss about the situation and look for the ways to move forward," said Slovenian prime minister Janez Jansa, whose country currently holds the EU presidency.

For its part, the commission will soon organise surveys to find out the reasons behind Ireland's rejection of the treaty.

Asylum for Macedonia's ex-PM puts Orban on spot

Authorities in Budapest confirmed the former prime minister of Macedonia, fleeing a jail sentence in his own country, has filed for asylum. Despite Hungary's strict asylum laws, the pro-Kremlin politician was not turned away.

Merkel calls for 'real, true' EU army

Angela Merkel's much-anticipated speech to the European Parliament was brief and to the point. Her message: Europe is alone in the world, the EU should be more united on defence, but not on the economy.

EU action on Hungary and Poland drowns in procedure

EU ministers' discussion on how to address rule of law issues in Poland and Hungary gets stuck on procedural issues, while Viktor Orban's government claims it is a target of the Brussels elite because of its anti-migration stance.

EU's centre-right make Weber their man to replace Juncker

The centre-right EPP party's congress wanted to show unity - but divisions remain after the political alliance lined up behind Germany's Manfred Weber as their 'Spitzenkandidat' ahead of next year's European election.

News in Brief

  1. US warns EU banks and firms against trading with Iran
  2. Merkel urged Romania not to move embassy to Jerusalem
  3. Protesters call for Czech leader to step down
  4. Former German chancellor labelled 'enemy' of Ukraine
  5. French lead opposition to Brexit deal on fisheries
  6. Private accounts of Danske Bank employees investigated
  7. UK's May defends Brexit deal to MPs, after ministers resign
  8. Brexit MP calls for 'no confidence' vote on May

Opinion

On Armistice Day, EU is still best gift we can give our children

While young people fought each other in 1918, young people in 2018 travel to study together under the Erasmus programme. But there is a risk of limiting our commemoration to representing the past through just speeches, museum exhibits and visits.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSTheresa May: “We will not be turning our backs on the Nordic region”
  2. International Partnership for Human RightsOpen letter to Emmanuel Macron ahead of Uzbek president's visit
  3. International Partnership for Human RightsRaising key human rights concerns during visit of Turkmenistan's foreign minister
  4. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSState of the Nordic Region presented in Brussels
  5. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe vital bioeconomy. New issue of “Sustainable Growth the Nordic Way” out now
  6. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  7. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General
  8. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSNordic design sets the stage at COP24, running a competition for sustainable chairs.
  9. Counter BalanceIn Kenya, a motorway funded by the European Investment Bank runs over roadside dwellers
  10. ACCACompany Law Package: Making the Best of Digital and Cross Border Mobility,
  11. International Partnership for Human RightsCivil Society Worried About Shortcomings in EU-Kyrgyzstan Human Rights Dialogue
  12. UNESDAThe European Soft Drinks Industry Supports over 1.7 Million Jobs

Latest News

  1. Brexit dominates EU affairs This WEEK
  2. How the EU commission got tunnel vision on self-driving cars
  3. No-confidence calls against May put Brexit deal in doubt
  4. Key points of the Brexit deal (if it ever comes into effect)
  5. Romania heaps scorn on 'revolting' EU criticism
  6. US steps in to clean up Cyprus
  7. 'Decisive progress' on Brexit as British cabinet backs deal
  8. Asylum for Macedonia's ex-PM puts Orban on spot

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us