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Sinn Féin wants a Europe of equals not a federal superstate

16 May, 2005


Sinn Féin Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald this morning set out in detail, in a lengthy document published by the party, the reasons why Sinn Féin is opposing the proposed EU Constitution. She has called for the public debate on the Constitution to begin now.

Ms McDonald said:

The proposed EU Constitution is one of the most significant social, political, economic and constitutional issues facing Ireland and the other EU member states today. The Constitution transforms the EU from a body of co-operating member states into an embryonic federal state with its own legally binding constitution.

"It deepens the democratic deficit, further concentrating power in the hands of the few at the expense of national parliaments and ordinary people. It undermines neutrality, and seeks to transform the EU into a global superpower, with its own Foreign Minister, army and armanents agency. It copperfastens the right wing economic agenda which has dominated EU policy for over a decade and seeks to extend such policies to public services and international trade agreements, undermining welfare provision and global justice priorities.

"It offers no new or meaningful social or human rights protections to citizens of member states, yet significantly increases the power and scope for undemocratic bodies such as the EU Commission and Council, in crucial areas of policy such as International Relations, defence, criminal justice, trade, and the internal market.

"This is a critical referendum for everyone on this island. It has huge implications for the future and the debate needs to start now." ENDS

13 reasons to reject the EU Constitution

It lays the legal foundations for a Federal Europe

It deepens the Democratic Deficit

It significantly increases in the powers of the EuropeanCouncil and Commission

It undermines of national sovereignty, national parliaments and the rights of citizens

It will end neutrality for Ireland and other Member States

It promotes a policy of substantial militarisation

It provides for single foreign policy, defence policy and EU foreign minister

It promotes the centralisation of economic control in the hands of the Council and Commission

It contains a clear constitutional commitment to a free market neo-liberal economic model

It promotes an economic model that will deepen existing levels of poverty and social exclusion within the EU

It will undermine the ability of member states to provide public services

The Charter of Fundamental Rights has no mechanisms for ensuring compliance, and does not add to the promotion of human rights or equality for citizens

It promotes policies in relation to the developing world that will deepen the levels of global inequality, poverty and instability

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