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Germany Demands Changes to Lisbon Treaty

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Despite initial opposition from nearly all European Union member states, excluding France, Germany is demanding that Europe modify the Lisbon Treaty. Berlin has put forward a blueprint of proposed changes.

Reuters reported European Council President Herman Van Rompuy will study the consequences of changing the treaty and deliver a report on how to proceed at a December summit, with the goal of reaching a consensus on the changes by March 2011. 

Regarding early reactions of other member states, a Guardian editorial writer stated, “They accepted this, in theory, but the episode heightened fears that, two decades after unification, Germany wants to shape the EU according to its own interests—from the ‘European Germany’ it espoused when I reported from there in the 1990s to a ‘German Europe’ today.”

Changes may involve sanctioning countries that fail to comply with proper budget management, such as overspending and creating deficits. However, a proposal to ban voting rights as part of these sanctions did not receive widespread support.

“…Berlin has also been a leading advocate of a permanent crisis mechanism to replace the hastily cobbled together €750 billion backstop mechanism agreed in May which expires in 2013,” stated EU Observer, “arguing that it must also incorporate a sovereign debt restructuring procedure so that the private sector also foots part of the bill of future bailouts.”


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