Czech president: German court ruling on Lisbon pact not a solution

3rd July 2009, Comments 0 comments

In a keenly awaited decision, the German Federal Constitutional Court said Tuesday the treaty must be put on ice until a law protecting national parliamentary powers is passed.

Prague -- A decision by Germany's top court to make ratification of the EU's Lisbon Treaty conditional on a new law does not correct the pact's faults, eurosceptic Czech President Vaclav Klaus said Thursday.

In a keenly awaited decision, the Federal Constitutional Court said Tuesday the treaty -- aimed at streamlining decision-making in the 27-nation bloc -- must be put on ice until a law protecting national parliamentary powers is passed.

The court rejected complaints that the treaty would transfer too much power to Brussels and said the reforms were fundamentally in line with the country's laws.

"There are fundamental questions that have not been answered," Klaus said in an opinion piece in the Prague daily Dnes.

"I don't believe it's possible to eliminate the well-known faults of the Treaty of Lisbon by means of an accompanying law," he said. "It would be too easy."

"It's not by chance that they propose resolving the contradictions between the treaty and the constitution by changing the country's legislation and not the treaty," he added.

The treaty -- which aims not only to make the EU run more smoothly but also give the bloc a stronger voice on the world stage -- must be ratified by all 27 member states before it can come into force.

It has been approved by the Czech parliament but Klaus refuses to sign it, along with his conservative Polish counterpart Lech Kacvzynski.

They are awaiting the result of a second referendum in Ireland -- which voted against the treaty last year -- after EU leaders gave Dublin guarantees the treaty would not affect issues such as military neutrality and abortion.

Britain could yet torpedo the treaty if the eurosceptic Conservative wins elections that must be held before June 2010 and holds a referendum on the treaty.

Said Klaus: "I am convinced that the debate will go on and we are still a long way from the end.”

AFP/Expatica

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