News / Europe

EU Treaty Has Long Road Ahead

British Prime Minister David Cameron leaves an EU summit in Brussels on December 9, 2011.
British Prime Minister David Cameron leaves an EU summit in Brussels on December 9, 2011.
Dominic Laurie

Analysts are saying the new EU treaty will leave the UK isolated within Europe. But how much of a done deal is it? Ireland is one of the 26 countries that has said it will push ahead with the treaty. But already its European Affairs Minister has said Friday that country could require a referendum to push it through. And it's far from certain people will say yes.

"Across the world, people will see that we've learned from mistakes made in the past - that credibility is the top priority," said German Chancellor Angela Merkel.  She joined other European leaders in agreeing that this treaty pushes Europe to a more united future.

All except one country, Britain, which refused to sign off on the deal, because it thought it failed to protect its key financial services industry.

Prime Minister David Cameron said: "What was on offer is not in Britain's interest, so I didn't agree to it."

However the leaders of 26 countries did feel it was in their sovereign interest.

Agreement between politicians is one thing. Passing a new treaty into law is another. Now is the difficult part.

Some countries will decide that parliamentary approval will be enough. However, others though may decide the treaty needs to be put to the popular vote.

Ireland’s Europe minister Lucinda Creighton said Friday there was a 50-50 chance the treaty will be put to a referendum. The government will make that decision in the next couple of weeks.

Ireland's Ciarán Toland led the campaign in favor of the last two big EU treaties to be put to the Irish people. He’s says it’s too early to say whether one will be called now.

"From a political pint of view, a referendum could be beneficial," said Toland.  "There is no question that a referendum in the present Irish context would be difficult to pass, but also there are many reasons why the Irish people would respond favorably to such a referendum"

The trouble for the Irish government is that EU referendums have proved to be a tricky business in recent years.

The Nice treaty in 2001 and the Lisbon one in 2007 were both rejected the first time around before modifications and arm-twisting secured the passing of both the second time around.

The last two referendums passed when the economy was still growing in Ireland. But now, with the economy languishing, the public may be even more reluctant to vote for more EU integration.

In Dublin, department stores are full of discount price tags.  Market vendors, too, are suffering.

Two in central Dublin says times are tough.

"They're looking for things like 10 euro 20 euro, that's it, you know," said one.

Which is a change from before...

"Ah, sure, like you know, six, 10 years, six years ago there would be a 40-50 euro spend, you know," said another vendor. "But it's still hard."

Despite the euro currency’s recent trouble, there are still several countries wanting to join. Only on Friday, Croatia finally signed its accession treaty to become the 28th member of the EU. With stagnating economy, can Ireland afford not to be a full member of the club?

You May Like

Photogallery Pistorius Sentenced, Taken to Prison

Pistorius, convicted of culpable homicide in shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, will likely serve about 10 months of five-year sentence, before completing it under house arrest More

UN to Aid Central Africa in Polio Vaccinations

Synchronized vaccinations will be conducted after Cameroon reports a fifth case of the wild polio virus in its territory More

WHO: Ebola Vaccine May Be in Use by Jan.

WHO assistant director Dr. Marie Paule Kieny says clinical trials of Ebola vaccines are underway or planned in Europe, US and Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid