EU constitution back on the table
UK Daily Mail | March 26, 2007
Tony Blair last night backed moves to revive the rejected EU constitution by 2009 - without offering voters a say in a referendum.
The Premier, who is in Germany, signed up to a declaration vowing to 'renew the political shape of Europe' before the next European elections.
And his close ally, EU commissioner Peter Mandelson, suggested the changes that would be proposed would not require the endorsement of the British people in a vote.
The 'Berlin Declaration' was agreed to mark 50 years of the union.
It does not mention the constitution by name, but says the EU should be placed on a 'renewed common basis' before the 2009 elections and concludes 'Europe is our common future'.
The last attempt to reform the EU's constitution - giving it a permanent president and its own foreign minister - faltered in 2005 after it was rejected in France and the Netherlands.
But Germany, which holds the rotating EU presidency, is keen to revive it.
German chancellor Angela Merkel said a summit to agree a new treaty should be held later this year.
Critics warn that Britain would lose its legal independence and be bound by EU doctrine in key policy areas.
Mrs Merkel wants to go further still, saying the EU should move towards creating a common army.
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