A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Czech president says EU proposal satisfies demands for Lisbon Treaty opt-out clause

[JURIST] The office of Czech Republic President Vaclav Klaus [official website, in Czech] issued a brief statement [text, in Czech] Friday indicating that a proposal from the Swedish presidency of the EU [official website] satisfies demands Klaus has made for an opt-out on the bloc's Treaty of Lisbon [EU materials; JURIST news archive]. Klaus is seeking an opt-out clause that would shield his country from property claims by ethnic Germans who were expelled from Czechoslovakia after World War II. The two-sentence statement provides no details about what the EU has proposed. President of the European Council, Swedish Prime Minster Fredrik Reinfeldt [official website] indicated details of the opt-out clause will be finalized during an EU summit next week in Brussels, saying [statement], "I welcome the statement by President Klaus. The Presidency will continue to work with this in view of next week's European [Summit].”

The Czech Republic has remained the lone holdout in the Lisbon Treaty ratification process, since Ireland’s ratification [JURIST report] last week. All 27 EU members must ratify by the treaty before it goes into effect. Poland and Britain already have opt-out clauses. The Czech Republic's Constitutional Court [official website; Czech] is scheduled to conduct a public hearing [JURIST report] on October 27 on challenges to the country's signing of the treaty. EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso [official website] urged [press release] the Czech Republic to sign the treaty and not raise artificial objections, saying it would be "completely absurd" to reopen the ratification process in the other member states.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.