Content Section

The Content section will provide news, quotes and background materials refering to the topic of the EU Constitution. The time-table will give you an overview about the current status concerning the referendums on the Constitution.


Britain unveils legislation for EU vote

Legislation to put the EU constitution before the British people in a referendum was introduced in parliament on Tuesday, along with a robust call for its adoption.

The European Union Bill was introduced by Foreign Secretary Jack Straw for debate and adoption in the House of Commons just days before French and Dutch referendums on the EU constitutional treaty.

"This important bill provides for a referendum to be held on the EU constitutional treaty and for the treaty to be given effect in UK law if approved by the referendum," said Straw in a statement. "Its introduction underlines our commitment to ratify this treaty by a referendum in the United Kingdom," he said.

He added: "I firmly believe that this treaty is good for the United Kingdom and good for Europe. It creates a framework for a European Union of nation-states which is more efficient, more effective and more democratic. I look forward to debating the facts of this treaty in the House, dispelling the many myths around it and setting out for the British public the clear case for voting 'yes'."

In a bold U-turn, Prime Minister Tony Blair announced in April last year that he would put the EU constitution to a referendum, despite opinion polls which consistently show that most Britons would reject it.

Straw has said that the referendum would probably come in the first half of next year, following Britain's six-month turn at the rotating EU presidency which begins July 1.

The European Union Bill, once adopted by parliament, would give effect to the EU constitution in British law through an amendment to the 1972 European Communities Act.

"It ensures that those changes to the act can only come into force after approval in a referendum," the Foreign Office said in a statement.

Source: EU business


"This important bill provides for a referendum to be held on the EU constitutional treaty." said Straw in a statement.