Irlande, deuxième référendum

Maynooth, Ireland – Les citoyens irlandais retournent aux urnes le 2 octobre prochain, pour soumettre une seconde fois le traité européen de Lisbonne à leurs suffrages. La tension monte dans les capitales de l’Union européenne à l’approche du vote, l’avenir de l’Union étant entre les mains des imprévisibles électeurs irlandais. Sur les trois occasions qu’ils ont eues de se prononcer sur un traité européen, les Irlandais ont exprimé deux fois leur refus.

Pour l’Union, l’enjeu est de taille. Le traité de Lisbonne représente le compromis auquel sont parvenu les dirigeants européens, à la suite de l’échec en 2005 de la ratification du Traité Constitutionnel Européen, dû notamment au Non des Français et des Néerlandais. Les négociations pour conclure ce traité avaient été laborieuses, et un deuxième refus de la part des Irlandais mettrait l’Union dans l’incapacité de le faire ratifier et de mettre ses clauses en œuvre.

La campagne pour le référendum en Irlande a attisé les antagonismes habituels. Les principaux partis politiques, les syndicats, les milieux d’affaires et un gros réseau de sociétés civiles se sont rangés sous la bannière du Oui. La campagne qu’ils ont menée a été plus harmonieuse et plus intense que la dernière, et le camp du Oui, selon la plupart des journalistes, devrait bénéficier de leur volonté de mobiliser le plus grand nombre d’électeurs et d’obtenir le plus fort taux de participation.

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