The EU’s Lisbon Treaty goes into force today.
And at the Jeronimos Monastery in the Portuguese capital, where the document was signed, preparations for a party are underway. Tonight’s celebrations, which you can follow live on EuroNews, come nearly two years after European leaders put their names to the Treaty. Its ratification however was to be a tortuous process. Ireland only backed it in a referendum in October, at the second time of asking. Czech President Vaclav Klaus gave up his attempts to block it a month later. The choice of low-profile candidates Catherine Ashton and Herman Van Rompuy as the bloc’s two new heavyweights also sparked controversy.l But, after all the trials and tribulations, the treaty finally comes into effect from today. Giving the EU a new president and a more powerful foreign policy chief, supporters say it will mean a more influential role for the bloc on the international stage.