The Czech constitutional court has thrown out a complaint against the Lisbon Treaty, removing the last obstacle to its ratification. It said the document was in line with the Czech constitution. The ruling paves the way for the treaty to come into effect throughout the EU. The Czech Republic is the only member state that has not yet approved it.
The document now just needs the president’s signature. Vaclav Klaus had said he would no longer oppose the treaty if it was cleared by the court. A staunch Eurosceptic, he argued the reform treaty threatened Czech sovereignty. But he softened his stance after EU leaders agreed to let the country opt out of the proposed rights charter – necessary he says to avoid property claims from Germans expelled from Czechoslovakia after World War II.
The Czech leader has compared the Lisbon Treaty to a speeding train that no-one can stop. It is designed to streamline the way the EU works and boost Europe’s role in world affairs.