The EU's draft Reform Treaty

On 23 July, the text of the EU’s draft Reform Treaty was released in French only. The English-language texts were released on 30-31 July, and to date (9 August) the draft Treaty is still not available in any other of the EU’s 20-odd languages.

The draft Reform Treaty would repeal or amend every single Article of the 62 Articles of the current Treaty on European Union (TEU) and would make 296 amendments to the 318 Articles of the current Treaty establishing the European Community (TEC). It would also amend or repeal most of the current 36 Protocols to the current Treaties as well as many Articles of the separate Treaty establishing the European Atomic Energy Community (the Euratom Treaty). Finally, it would add a number of new Protocols and Declarations to the Treaties.

The EU summit meeting (European Council) decided in June that these far-reaching amendments should be agreed by the end of 2007 and that the Reform Treaty should be ratified by June 2009 at the latest. In fact, the intention of the Portuguese Presidency of the Council is to agree on the text of the Treaty by mid-October. Taking account of the summer break this leaves very little time for civil society, national parliaments and the European Parliament to examine the draft text before it is agreed – and then once it is agreed, the Treaty will be presented to parliaments on a “take it or leave it” basis.

Moreover, the text of the Reform Treaty is completely unintelligible unless it is read alongside the existing Treaties. Furthermore, the full impact of many of the amendments to the Treaties set out in the draft Reform Treaty needs further explanation. Finally, there has been much public discussion of whether or not the draft Reform Treaty is essentially identical to the EU’s Constitutional Treaty of 2004.

In order to further public understanding of and debate upon the draft Reform Treaty, the following Statewatch analyses make the text of the draft Treaty comprehensible, by setting out the entire texts of the existing TEU and TEC and showing precisely how those texts would be amended by the draft Treaty. There are explanatory notes on the impact of each substantive amendment to the Treaties, and each analysis includes general comments, giving an overview of the changes and pointing out exactly which provisions of the draft Reform Treaty were taken from the Constitutional Treaty, and which provisions are different from the Constitutional Treaty.

There are 3 analyses, divided into ten parts.

Analysis no 1
focusses on the issue of Justice and Home Affairs

Analysis no. 2 is the amended text of the TEU, and is divided into 2 parts:
the non-foreign policy part of the Treaty (basic principles and key institutional rules of the EU) and
the foreign policy part of that Treaty

Analysis no. 3 is the amended text of the TEC, and is divided into seven parts more or less following the structure of the Treaty:
Part One of the Treaty on general provisions
Part Two on non-discrimination and citizenship
half of Part Three on the internal market and competition(except for the JHA clauses, which are the subject of analysis no. 1)
the second half of Part Three, on other internal EU policies (such as social policy, monetary union and environment policy)
Parts Four and Five, on the associated territories and external relations (including trade and development policy)
Part Six, on the institutional rules(including the rules on the political institutions, the Court of Justice and the ‘flexibility’ rules)
Part Seven, the final provisions

Analyses of the Protocols and Declarations, and the Euratom Treaty, will follow later.

[…]

Statewatch

Well well well.

On the fifth page of the first PDF, we have this:

Article 61 [67] (III-257)

1. The Union shall constitute an area of freedom, security and justice with respect for fundamental rights and the different legal systems and traditions of the Member States.

Sounds good doesnt it? but wait…

2. It shall ensure the absence of internal border controls for persons and shall frame a common policy on asylum, immigration and external border control, based on solidarity between Member States, which is fair towards third-country nationals. For the purpose of this Title, stateless persons shall be treated as third-country nationals.

WTF? Booooooooooooooooooooooommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!!!!!!

My emphasis.

A common policy on asylum? Lets let that one lie for the moment.

This part of the document is not only outrageous, for a legal document, it is extremely vague. As far as I know, there is no legal relationship known as ‘solidarity’. This sort of language does not belong in a legal document, unless it is defined somewhere else with great precision.

This part also uses the phrase ‘which is fair’. This is entirely nebulous. What the Germans consider to be fair is anathema to the decent English. This treaty, if it is filled with this sort of garbage, is a dead document. Any lawyer who looks at it will destroy it without getting past the first five pages.

3. The Union shall endeavour to ensure a high level of security through measures to prevent and combat crime, racism and xenophobia, and through measures for coordination and cooperation between police and judicial authorities and other competent authorities, as well as through the mutual recognition of judgments in criminal matters and, if necessary, through the approximation of criminal laws.

This cannot work, because the laws of Austria are reprehensible if applied to an Englishman. There cannot be mutual recognition of Germany’s laws for example, because they have outlawed Home Schooling; should a Home Schooling family flee to the UK for freedom, if this treaty were in place, they would be extraditable for something that is not a crime in the UK.

4. The Union shall facilitate access to justice, in particular through the principle of mutual recognition of judicial and extrajudicial decisions in civil matters.

Once again, there is no way that the UK can recognize the myriad bad law that exists throughout the EU. It is not a problem that these countries have what we think is bad law, you simply do not subject yourself to them by no going there to live or do business. What is entirely wrong is that they want to force their law down our throats.

Article 62 [68] (III-258)

The European Council shall define the strategic guidelines for legislative and operational planning within the area of freedom, security and justice.

Unelected, unaccountable, undemocratic and totally insane.

Only a traitor would sign such a document.

There cannot be a referendum on this because no one in their right mind would sign up to it. This can only be brought in by compulsion, which will make all of its provisions void on their face.

In effect, this is a soft coup. You have no obligation to obey any of its provisions, and any government that ratifies this treaty is illegitimate.

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