Giscard warns 'no re-negotiation' of EU treaty

19th May 2005, Comments 0 comments

LONDON, May 19 (AFP) - The European Union (EU) constitution cannot be renegotiated if French voters reject the document at the end of the month, its architect Valery Giscard D'Estaing said Thursday.

LONDON, May 19 (AFP) - The European Union (EU) constitution cannot be renegotiated if French voters reject the document at the end of the month, its architect Valery Giscard D'Estaing said Thursday.  

Giscard d'Estaing, the former French president who chaired the convention which drafted the constitution, told BBC radio that renegotiation would be "impossible" because it would cast doubt on the whole drafting process.  

"There is absolutely no plan B," D'Estaing said.  

"What do you want to renegotiate? We had a long negotiation. The convention first, where you could express all your demands, and then inter-governmental negotiation for one full year," he said.  

"The British must be satisfied that every red line has not been crossed. If we negotiate again people will think OK we can cross some of these red lines," he said.  

He said "public relations strategists working against ratification" wanted to encourage lukewarm supporters of the constitution to vote against it in the hope they would get a better alternative.   

Despite opinion polls suggesting that French voters may vote against the constitution on May 29, the former French leader predicted they would narrowly approve it.  

Late Wednesday, Spain became the ninth country to ratify the constitution with an overwhelming vote in favour in its Senate for the landmark document.  

All 25 EU members need to approve the constitution for it to take effect. It is intended to streamline the workings of the enlarged European Union.  

The British government sent out mixed signals Wednesday on whether it would proceed with a referendum on ratification if it is rejected in France.

© AFP

Subject: French News

0 Comments To This Article