Sinn Féin on track to return all-Ireland team of MEPs to Europe
Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams MP, speaking at the launch of the party‚s campaign for the European elections, said: "Sinn Féin is asking voters in all parts of this island to return an all-Ireland team of MEPs to Europe. Our message is simple - a vote for Sinn Féin is a vote for an alternative, for a working voice in Europe, it is a vote for the peace process, it is a vote for neutrality, it is a vote for equality and change."
Mr. Adams said:
"Sinn Féin is the only all-Ireland party standing candidates in all five constituencies on the island with the ability to win seats on both sides of the Border. By electing Sinn Féin representatives, the people of Ireland can have truly national representation in the EU Parliament for the first time. Sinn Féin is working to bring about real change, in the peace process, in local communities and in presenting a viable alternative to the present direction of the European Union.
We want a Europe of equals. We take the same approach to the European Union as we do to the peace process and building for Irish unity. We will engage, campaign and bring forward alternative policies. We will take on those vested interests who want a federal Europe to act in the interests of big business.
The last five years have in many ways been a real learning experience for Irish people in relation to the EU. The government‚s decision to ignore the wishes of half a million voters and re-run the Nice Treaty was blatantly anti-democratic. The government failed to listen to the people and failed to address the many concerns that were raised about the direction of the EU.
"The Irish Presidency of the EU was another real opportunity to put issues raised by the Irish people on the European agenda. The government could have acted to protect neutrality. They could have acted to demand that Irish is recognised as an official EU language. They could have acted to address a wide range of concerns about the growing lack of democracy within the EU. But the Irish Presidency is almost over and the government have spent the entire time transfixed by the effort to secure a deal on the proposed EU Constitution, even if such a deal means a further dilution of Irish sovereignty.
"Our message to voters is simple ˆ a vote for Sinn Féin is a vote for an alternative, for a working voice in Europe, it is a vote for the peace process, it is a voate for neutrality, it is a vote for equality. If voters choose to put their trust in us, they can be assured that we will bring our agenda for change to the European stage."ENDS