The President of the European Parliament has told Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek in Prague that the success of the Czech Republic’s EU presidency will depend on its prompt ratification of the Lisbon Treaty. Hans-Gert Pöttering has been chairing a meeting of the EU assembly’s political group heads in the new EU member state’s capital.
The Czech Constitutional Court has ruled that the EU reform treaty conforms with Czech law. This removes a potential obstacle in the last country in the bloc to vote on it, just as it is about to become the EU’s presiding nation for six months. Pöttering rubbed the point in that early in 2009 might not be too soon – like it or lump it. No one should be surprised if the Czechs rub back. The country that invented the sugar lump has an avowed eurosceptic as its head of state. And a multi-faceted sense of humour, if this national television spot aimed at raising interest in the presidency is anything to go by. The slogan it uses translates into English as: ‘We will make it sweet for Europe.’ In the Czech vernacular, the original idiom means to give someone a hard time.