[Sinn Fein]

13 November 2001

Prodi remarks highlight reason for Nice No Vote

The Sinn Fein representative on the National Forum on Europe, Aengus O'Snodaigh, has said that the remarks by European Commission president Romana Prodi, yesterday, are a clear indication of the contempt the Commission has for the democratic process in member states.

Mr O Snodaigh said:

``Romana Prodi's expressed wish to tighten the Commission's grip over the tax and spending policies of member states is once again a clear indication of the contempt that the Commission has for the democratic process.

``Coupled with his recent calls for sweeping changes in defence and internal security Prodi is determined to achieve by default what the Irish electorate rejected when they voted No to the Treaty of Nice in June.

``This cannot not be allowed to go unchallenged.  The Irish government has an obligation to not only respect the will of the people but to defend their democratically taken decisions.   Nice was rejected because people could see through all the euro-speak that Mr. Prodi and his colleagues were on a superpower building exercise.

``The fiasco over the funding of Aer Lingus already shows that Prodi's vision of Europe will not serve the interests of the Irish nation.  It is therefore all the more important that we collectively use the Forum on Europe to offer an alternative view.''

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