[Sinn Fein]

10ú Deireadh Fómhair 2001

O Snodaigh to represent Sinn Fein at Forum on Europe

Sinn Fein has announced that its Dublin South Central representative Aengus O Snodaigh will represent the party on the Forum on Europe which is due to meet for the first time next Thursday 18th October.

Mr. O Snodaigh said:

``Throughout the referendum campaign on the Treaty of Nice, Sinn Fein voiced our deep dissatisfaction that proposals for major constitutional change, with profound consequences for Irish democracy and the future of the EU, were being rushed through without much needed debate and consultation.

``We support the concept of a Forum on Europe but we are concerned that the government will attempt to use the Forum as a tool to re-run the Nice Treaty, something which is entirely unacceptable.  

``We have been entirely consistent on the issue of Europe.  We believe that the current process of European integration is moving the EU decisively from what is supposed to be a partnership of equals towards a federal state with a powerful and unelected central government dominated by the larger states.  This is something which we believe is not in the interests of Ireland, the EU or indeed the applicant states.

``I am proud that I have the opportunity to represent Sinn Fein at the forum.  The Forum must not be allowed to become a talking shop.  Sinn Fein have an unique analysis of the part that Ireland should play in the European Union.  Sinn Fein want a Europe of equals.  This is the case that we will bring to the Forum.''

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