Austria to revive EU constitution debate

[JURIST] Austrian Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik [official profile] has promised new efforts to revive the stalled EU Constitution [JURIST document; JURIST news archive] during the Austrian Presidency of the EU [official website] in the first half of 2006. The draft constitution was rejected by both France [JURIST report] and the Netherlands [JURIST report] last year, halting further national referendums as the proposal must be approved by all 25 member nations before taking effect. Plassnik has said that Austria will hold consultations before deciding how to proceed, but Austrian Vice-Chancellor Hubert Gorbach [official profile] has suggested scrapping the current proposal, which creates the posts of president and foreign minister for the EU Council, enhances the powers of the European Parliament, and streamlines the legislative process. Instead, Gorbach has said a new text should be created that will appease member nations currently holding out. The Independent has more.

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