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Sinn Féin completely and absolutely opposed to European Communities Bill

8 February, 2007

Sinn Fein Justice Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has expressed Sinn Fein's "complete and absolute" opposition to the European Communities Bill 2006. Speaking in the Dáil today Deputy Ó Snodaigh described the Bill as "a component part of the now snowballing democratic deficit at the heart of the EU project".

He said, "We are absolutely opposed to the European Communities Bill 2006. This Bill represents a quantum leap in terms of Ministerial power. Allowing Ministers to determine criminal offences and sanctions, including imprisonment, by regulations may be acceptable to the EU elite and a Justice Minister who is clearly jealous of the powers available to dictators but it is not acceptable to Sinn Féin.

"This Bill which also seeks to have sweeping retrospective effect must be seen as a component part of the now snowballing democratic deficit at the heart of the EU project and this government's relations with it. Roman Herzog, the ex-president of Germany, recently questioned whether Germany can truly be called a 'parliamentary democracy' given that the EC/EU make 80% of its laws. In 2005 the Oireachtas scrutiny sub-committee processed, in a frequently meaningless fashion, 329 European legislative proposals. This amounts to nearer 90% of legislation concluded by the Oireachtas that year.

"Where will this end? When every legally binding decision impacting on the lives of the people are taken by government Ministers acting alone in Brussels? What will this Bill be used to sneak through? The backlog of ultra-regressive, ultra-repressive Justice and Home Affairs measures?" ENDS

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