L'Europe en attente du référendum irlandais

MAYNOOTH, IRLANDE –  Le 12 juin, les Irlandais vont se prononcer sur le traité de Lisbonne, l'instrument conçu pour améliorer l'efficacité et la légitimité de l’Union européenne, ce bloc  qui compte maintenant 27 membres. L'Irlande est le seul pays à soumettre la ratification du traité à référendum - tous les autres membres ayant choisi la voie parlementaire - et tout semble indiquer que le résultat sera serré.

Une victoire du Non déstabiliserait le nouveau gouvernement du Premier ministre Brian Cowen. Pour l'UE, un rejet du traité par l'Irlande déboucherait sans doute sur une crise assez longue, et conduirait peut-être même à la fin du processus d'intégration européenne tel qu'il est à l'oeuvre.

En 2001, les Irlandais ont rejeté le traité de Nice, ce qui a plongé l'UE dans une longue phase de crise et d'introspection qui ne s'est achevée qu'en 2005 avec l'accord sur le "traité constitutionnel". Aussitôt après, les Français et les Hollandais ont rejeté ce traité, ce qui a ramené les négociations au point de départ. Aujourd'hui, après une période longue et difficile de réflexion et de marchandage, tout le parcours accompli se retrouve à nouveau menacé.

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