European leaders meeting in Brussels have decided not to set a deadline for ratification of the stalled Lisbon Treaty after Ireland’s No vote. The Irish Government is expected to report back at an EU summit in October with a game plan for salvaging the reform treaty. Speaking to reporters French President Nicolas Sarkozy said further enlargement would be halted until institutional problems were resolved.
“The Irish affair doesn’t simplify the task,” he said, “but it’s there. I’m trying to make a more convincing argument to our partners to act concretely. At the same time we aim to limit the institutional problem regarding the Irish question.”
President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso was keen to emphasise the EU was not paralysed by institutional reform and was addressing citizens’ key concerns over rising food and oil prices.
“They expect answers on the rising food and oil prices, we care about their concerns and their anxieties, this can not be solved on a national level alone, Europe is ready to be part of the solution but even Europe can not solve it alone.”
EU leaders are expected to announce several measures on Friday to address sectors affected by rising prices.
With leaders meeting late into the night many journalists decided instead to watch Germany book a place in Euro 2008’s quarter finals beating Portugal 3-2.