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Cowen needs to tell EU leaders Lisbon is finished

15 October, 2008

Sinn Féin Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald has called on Taoiseach Brian Cowen to outline to EU leaders at today’s summit in Brussels that there can be no re-run of the Lisbon Treaty in Ireland.


The Dublin MEP said:


“Whilst today’s EU summit will be overshadowed by the current financial crisis Lisbon remains on the agenda. The Taoiseach will be expected to outline his counterparts why the Irish people rejected the Treaty.


“The government’s Lisbon research document published last month will be used by the Taoiseach to inform EU leaders what the rest of us have all known since the Irish people rejected the Lisbon Treaty in June of this year.


“The report shows that the majority of Irish people support the European Union. Throughout the campaign the No side set out in very clear terms that Ireland’s place is in Europe. However we are ambitious for the role that Ireland can play on the European stage. Ireland should not become simply yes men to the EU project. Our participation in the union must be constructive in shaping a democratic, peaceful and prosperous Europe.


“However the Lisbon debate was never about Ireland being in or out of Europe. It was and must continue to be about the social, political and economic implications of the Treaty content for Ireland, the EU and the developing world.


“The loss of a commissioner, the erosion of Ireland’s neutrality, the undermining of workers rights and declining democracy between the EU and its member states have all been cited as key reasons why the people said no to Lisbon. Again this is nothing new. Time and time again in polls, media analysis and public debate these concerns were relayed to the political establishment throughout Europe.


“The Taoiseach should hold his head high when relaying the Irish people’s hopes and expectations for Europe. The Lisbon Treaty is finished a better deal can and must be secured.  It is the government’s job to deliver such a deal.” ENDS




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