by Luis de Sousa
Fri Oct 19th, 2007 at 06:12:31 AM EST
Last night the Portuguese Foreign Minister told the foreign press that an agreement on the new Treaty could be achieved still during the day's negotiations. It seemed a bit far fetched taking in account the last moments reluctances of the Italians adding up to the usual problems brought by the Polish.
Today by 1h15 in the morning a short press conference announced the agreement: we have a new Constitutional Treaty. The institutional problems Europe had been facing for the last six years are finally over.
Promoted by Colman - let the distortions and propaganda begin. Again. My understanding is that the new treaty gives you constipation and makes your dogs' fur drop out. I haven't read it yet though.
The participants were all smiles, everyone was happy. The Commission's President had these words:
I'm extremely happy.
We have been discussing the institutional questions for six years and it is in Lisbon that we've reached an agreement.
We are before an historical agreement, that empowers Europe to act in the XXI century
The Portuguese Prime Minister, the present acting President of the Union wasn't far behind:
This is a victory for Europe. We are getting out of a blind alley. We no longer have an institutional crisis [...]
Europe is now stronger to assume its role in the World and solve problems of economy and of its citizens.[...]
The Portuguese Presidency achieved its goal: discuss and approve the text Thursday and Friday start discussing the important issues for EU's future.
"After all the political discussions, this is a great success [...]
Nothing has been changed from the mandate we agreed at the end of the German presidency
Kacinsky (you guess which one):
Poland got what it wanted. The EU reform treaty project is now crowned with success[...]
I'm very happy this business is behind us.
Sarkozy used a tautology:
très grande satisfaction - really big satisfaction
It is now time for Europe to move on and devote all our efforts to the issues that matter to the people of Europe - economic growth, jobs, climate change and security.
Interesting words from the UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage:
Well, here in Lisbon we have agreed a treaty that makes the European Union a country. A country called Europe now exists once this treaty goes through - there is no legal debate or argument about that.
I wish so.
The Italian reluctances were solved by adding one more deputy to their pool (from 72 to 73), which gives Italy parity with the UK but with France or Germany. The Parliament is now constituted by 750 deputy plus its President that now has no voting powers.
The last obstacle was the juridical inclusion of the Ioannina clause, that allows for the suspension of an European decision, even if approved by the majority of the States. Later in December it will be discussed the time frames of such suspension (from six months to two years).
If everyone's happy maybe I should be also. Europe at 27 will finally seem to have a framework to work properly, and with the treaty approved today it will go into effectiveness by the next elections in 2009. But I'll wait until I can read the treaty and take my conclusions from there.
The Treaty will be signed on December 12th and will get the name of the harbouring city - Lisbon.
So c'mon and join this moments of Joy: