Skip to comments.EU will take Britain's UN seat, says Hague
Posted on 07/20/2007 1:21:25 AM PDT by bruinbirdman
William Hague has attacked a "shocking" Government concession that will give a new European Union "foreign minister" the right to speak from Britain's seat on the United Nations Security Council.
The British government had claimed that powers for the EU foreign policy supremo, rechristened a High Representative, have been reduced and his UN role stripped from the new treaty.
However, an EU official confirmed: "We retain, except for the name of the minister, the Constitutional Treaty text of 2004 including the provisions on the UN.
"There is a provision which provides for the representative of the EU to state the position of the EU at the UN Security Council."
The Government had insisted that negotiations on the treaty had ensured that the British presence on the Security Council would never be replaced by an EU representative. However, the text provides for the British seat to be occupied by an EU minister when the bloc has a united position on issues.
Mr Hague, the shadow foreign secretary, has criticised Gordon Brown for allowing "one of the most damaging and important provisions in the rejected EU Constitution" to be resurrected after referendums by the French and Dutch two years ago voted against it.
"It would seriously compromise the independence of our foreign policy," he said. "It is shocking that the Government have yet again let this through and it totally destroys their claim that their so-called red line on foreign policy is effective."
Provisions, drawn word for word from the old constitution, giving the EU "foreign minister" speaking rights from Britain's and France's UN seats will be included in a draft treaty to be presented to a meeting of foreign ministers on Monday, diplomats have confirmed.
"When the Union has defined a position on a subject which is on the United Nations Security Council agenda, those member states which sit on the Security Council shall request that the Union Minister for Foreign Affairs be asked to present the Union's position," the text states.
Unlike Europe's current foreign policy representative Javier Solana, the new "minister" will also be vice-president of the European Commission overseeing an EU diplomatic service, weakening direct control over the post by national governments.
"It is a big step towards the federalists' end goal: a United States of Europe in which we would be represented at the UN not by a British ambassador on the Security Council but by the EU foreign minister, which this new treaty has also taken from the constitution," said Mr Hague.
Speaking in Brussels this week, Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, the architect of the old constitution, mocked presentational spin over the "minister".
"The High Representative for Common Foreign and Security is one and the same as the Union Minister for Foreign Affairs," he said.
The issue is set to become a major stumbling block for efforts by Mr Brown, the Prime Minister, to deny a referendum on the EU Treaty.
"With provisions like this, there can be no question but that the new treaty would fundamentally transform the EU and is in effect the EU constitution in all but name, as Gordon Brown has admitted," said Mr Hague. "So the British people must be allowed the final say in the referendum they were promised."
Europe should have one - not more not less.
RE: Colonialism. The British gave independence back to its colonies, something previous empires have been loathe to do and we have great relations with many of these nations that now form the Commonwealth. Britain’s colonialism was a product of the time: when most states in Europe attempted to aquire valuable overseas possessions. It’s not our fault we were better than the rest of Europe in capturing these territories and beating other Europeans who tried to sieze them/held other possessions.
With regards to this article, it’s all speculation at this stage. You have to bear in mind that Britain is the most Euro-sceptic nation in Europe (more so than even Poland). When I actually see an EU person representing Britain in the way speculated by the article, then I will be concerned. Bear in mind, though, that the Telegraph wrote a few months ago that the Royal Navy was going to be reduced in capabilities to the rough equivalent of a coast guard force. A couple of weeks ago, it was actually announced that it is getting two new aircraft carriers and the Telegraph article had been nothing but scare-mongering. It’s also in Hague’s interest to exaggerate the the proposed EU ‘menace’: he’s an opposition politician.
I any case, the British people would not stand to be superceded on the international stage. If this speculation actually occurs, then calls for a referendum in the UK will become unbeatable for the Brown government.
No one asked for this wretched, corrupt, oppressive , arrogant, self serving monolith; the new Soviet Union.
No member of the UK public that is.
The EU has its own flag, currency, Parliament, Treasury, and Civil Service. Are all these things not the primary parts of a nation ?
It is beginning to resemble a tape worm; the more it consumes, the more it wants, the more the ‘little people’ try and rein it in (as in the May 2004 Referenda in France and Holland) the deafer it becomes.
I don’t particularly give a maggot’s toss what happens in France, Germany, or Italy - I have nothing against their populations, in fact I am fond of them in a lot of ways - but how can I spell it out here ? I AM NOT EUROPEAN.
I am a British Islander, an English nobody who works 5 days a week and only wants democratic representatives who will look out for MY interest; who will not jump into bed with the Brussels Whore as soon as they are elected.
I have asked this question literally hundreds of times before and no one has given me a straight and satisfactory answer : -
Please name me just ONE benefit that Britain has seen due to EU membership.
Ask small businesses who have been closed down by red tape.
Ask farmers who saw their healthy livestock killed in case they had foot and mouth.
Ask serving police officers who have their efforts to thwart crime and terrorism blocked by EU human rights laws.
Ask our Military now that the EU has forced them to take on openly gay, lesbian and transvestite personnel, not to mention practising Islamic officers who are allowed exemption from service in Iraq and Afganistan (more about that another time).
Ask native residents who are made to feel like second class citizens in their own land, because our own authorities cannot stop UMI (Uncontrolled Mass Immigration), again thanks to EU ‘freedom of movement’ crap.
The one and only answer people come up with is the feeble old one - ‘well, Europe has had peace since 1945’. That is true enough, but Europe has had nothing to do with it. Peace has been entirely due to America building up NATO and standing watch at Checkpoint Charlie for 45 years.
I have no time for empires, British or otherwise. I was born in 1965, nothing I can do about that I’m afraid.
I have no desire to poke my beak into the internal affairs of any othe nation ; all I ask is the same for mine.
‘’ No one asked for this wretched, corrupt, oppressive , arrogant, self serving monolith; the new Soviet Union.
No member of the UK public that is.’’
So why did Britain join the EU at all ? And why did even M. Thatcher not leave it ? If the majority of your people does not like it - leave it! It is as simple as that !
Makes it easier for the rest-EU as well, if they can proceed without ongoing obstructions.
Or could it be, that some of your politicians still see some benefits after all ??
Trouble is all 3 of our mainstream parties are for the EU.
Wwe do not have a choice in the matter.
One day in the future people may back an organisation that pledges to free our nation by force.