Below is a press release which was given to the media today after Paul got the opportunity to question Commission President Barroso in the European Parliament today. Paul questioned his support for the agreement which creates an austerity union, the market coups carried out in Greece and Italy and his silence on an Irish referendum:
Paul Murphy MEP calls for referendum on new Treaty in European Parliament:
· Stony silence of Barroso on Irish referendum raises fears of blackmail and fear campaign
· “Austerity union” would impoverish millions more across Europe
Speaking after a debate today in the European Parliament on the outcome of last week’s Euro summit, where Commission President Barroso failed to answer direct questions about a referendum in Ireland, Paul Murphy MEP commented:
“The lack of any response by European Commission President to direct questions to me about whether the Commission will respect the democratic right of the Irish people to a referendum is extremely worrying. At the very least, it suggests that in any such campaign, the old tricks of fear and blackmail will be wheeled out in an attempt to intimidate the Irish people. The Commission should clarify its position immediately and respect the right of people in Ireland to decide freely about this fundamental change.”
Speaking in the Parliament earlier, Paul Murphy asked President Barroso:
“When it [the agreement] says “automatic sanctions”, doesn’t that in fact mean fines of hundreds of millions of euros for countries that dare to stray from the line of austerity imposed by the unelected European Commission?
“When it refers innocuously to “a strengthening of economic and budgetary surveillance”, isn’t that the same sort of “surveillance” as that exercised by colonial powers over their colonies?
“And isn’t the “fiscal stability union” that this Agreement proposes a euphemism for an “Austerity union” where the cutback policies will be institutionalised and impoverish millions more and destroy more economies?
“Mr. Barroso, you have effectively suspended democracy in Greece and Italy, imposing government by the bankers for the bankers. Can I ask you to respect the legal and political right of the people of Ireland to a referendum and not to wage a campaign of fear and blackmail? Surely people, not only in Ireland, but across Europe, should have a right to decide freely about such a fundamental change which will diminish democracy and enshrine austerity?”