Sunday, June 21, 2009
The European Union (EU) summit concluded on Friday with agreement being reached between the Irish government and the Council of the European Uinon regarding independence guarantees for Ireland in the areas of taxation, ethics (abortion), and neutrality. The Irish did not get their wish that the protocol containing the guarantees be attached to the Lisbon Treaty, but instead agreed that the guarantees would be contained in a protocal attached to the next accession treaty for a new member state. EU leaders from other countries had worried that if the protocal were attached to the Lisbon Treaty itself, that could open debate on the Treaty in Member States where it has already been agreed to. This latest agreement paves the way for the Irish to hold a second referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, which will likely occur in October.