UK referendum suspension - national realpolitik overrules the European interest
The Young European Federalists (JEF-Europe) regret the unilateral action announced today by the UK government to suspend progress of the legislation that would have enabled a referendum on the European Constitution to take place in 2006.
"National egoism once again seems to rule the day," stated Jon Worth, President of JEF-Europe.
"Whatever the heads of state might have discussed next week at the European Council, the UK's annoucement today is a clear effort to kick this Constitution off the table."
"This annoucement is effectively a government holding up its hands and saying 'we're scared' and that national political advantage matters more than the future of the European Union. The message will certainly not be taken positively by the citizens."
JEF-Europe has campaigned in favour of ratification of the European Constitution, and has strongly defended the line that ways should be found for the Constitution to enter into force even if all Member States do not ratify. A ratification process that lasts 2 years and where unanimity is applied is obviously bound to incur problems.
"Now is not the time for hasty or rash decisions," continued Jon Worth.
"The populations of Netherlands and France have sent a negative message to the EU. We need suggestions for solutions, not member states turning their backs and letting realpolitik triumph."
"The upcoming European Council has to asses the options of how to keep the Constitution alive and how to make sure that the reforms it brings to the European Union are implemented. This is something that European leaders should be working on, not domestic bickering!"