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The Warsaw Voice » Politics » October 14, 2009
Politics
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President Signs Lisbon Treaty
October 14, 2009   
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President Lech Kaczyński Oct. 10 signed the Lisbon Treaty, thus completing the treaty's ratification procedure in Poland.

The treaty-signing ceremony in Warsaw attracted officials including European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek, Prime Minister Donald Tusk, and Fredrik Reinfeldt, the prime minister of Sweden, which currently holds the rotating six-month presidency of the EU.

Kaczyński had said on many occasions he would sign the treaty once Ireland approved it in a second referendum. In June last year, 53 percent of Irish citizens voted against the treaty, but in the second referendum Oct. 2 this year, the treaty was approved by 67 percent of voters.

EU leaders approved the Treaty of Lisbon in December 2007. The treaty was designed to reform the functioning of the enlarged EU by introducing a simplified decision-making process and abolishing veto procedures in around 40 areas. The treaty paves the way for EU diplomatic services and the office of a permanent president of the European Council to be set up.

In February 2008, the Polish government approved a bill to ratify the Treaty of Lisbon. At the end of February 2008, the lower house of parliament decided that the treaty would be ratified in this country through parliamentary procedures. After much debate and dispute, on April 1, 2008, the lower house passed a law authorizing the president to ratify the Treaty of Lisbon and the upper house gave the green light to ratification on the following day.

With the treaty now signed by Kaczyński, the only remaining question is the attitude of Czech President Vaclav Klaus, a declared Euroskeptic.
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