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EU leaders putting off Lisbon Treaty discussion to October

[JURIST] The European Council [official website] agreed [meeting report, PDF] at a Friday meeting of government leaders in Brussels to reconvene in October to discuss the future of the Treaty of Lisbon [official website; PDF text]. Last week, Irish voters rejected the Treaty [JURIST report] with 53.4 percent voting against it, raising serious concerns that the Treaty, which sets out guidelines for EU reform, will fail to gain full ratification in the EU. In a press release Friday, the Slovenian President of the EU called [press release] the Council meeting "very constructive," and said that he "sensed a very positive mood and a high level of solidarity" concerning the Treaty's prospects. Reuters has more. The Economist has additional coverage.

Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek [personal website] expressed doubt [BBC report] that his parliament would ratify the Treaty once the country's constitutional court declares that it conforms with the Czech constitution. UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown [official profile] made similar comments, saying that the UK would not ratify the Treaty of Lisbon [BBC report] until the High Court rules on lawsuit which aims to force a referendum on the Treaty. In March, the House of Commons voted 311-248 against [JURIST report] putting ratification of the Treaty to a public referendum vote. The Treaty must be ratified by all 27 EU member states before it can take effect, though each country may choose the method of ratification. Leaders from the 27 countries that make up the European Union signed the reform treaty [JURIST report] last December, and fourteen countries have ratified the document [JURIST archive]. In 2005, an earlier draft for a European constitution [JURIST news archive] also failed when voters in France and the Netherlands [JURIST reports] rejected the proposal in national referenda. AFP has more.

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