Thursday 8 October 2009

EU Lisbon Treaty: Erratic Presidents playing games

Almost 22 months after the EU Treaty of Lisbon was signed (13 December 2007), two erratic Presidents are still playing games, inventing new twists.

Spokespersons for Polish President Lech Kaczynski have kept offering the public different dates for the final signature of the ratification instrument. The latest guesses are Saturday or Sunday.

In the Czech Republic President Vaclav Klaus refused to take any calls from Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt for several days after the Irish Lisbon 2009 referendum result became clear.

When Klaus finally did speak with Reinfeldt today, he had added a new excuse to the delay caused by the renewed legal challenges by his pals to the Czech Constitutional Court.

Klaus now requires a two line “footnote” to the amending treaty, somehow related to the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.

(The United Kingdom and Poland have opted out of the EU Charter, which embodies the fundamental freedoms and rights of EU citizens, but the Czech Republic has not opted out of the Charter.)

Among others, the Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter and the BBC have reported on the new turn of events, but the contents and the legal status of the new demand are still unclear.


The 27 member states of the European Union have been forced to send the old Commission and the High Representative Javier Solana into injury time, and they are anxious to get the institutions up and running.

Something is rotten in the state of the constitutional systems in Poland and the Czech Republic.

Ralf Grahn

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