Thursday, June 19, 2003
Thessalonika - 19th June 2003, 23.23

The EU leaders and their prospective members are meeting behind protective shields to discuss the issues of the day, ie the Constitution, asylum and the transatlantic rifts. A report can be read here.

Blair has settled on his negotiating strategy, a series of distinct rubicons:

The Prime Minister wants the Government to focus on a handful of "red line" issues -such as retaining the veto on tax, social security and defence - rather than entering the negotiations with a long list of amendments to the draft treaty drawn up by a convention chaired by the former president of France Valery Giscard d'Estaing. His proposals will be presented to today's summit of EU leaders in Greece, with several countries, including Germany, expected to demand that the text is not watered down to accommodate Britain.

Of course, most of them are not subject to qualified majority voting at this stage. Typical spin: using a Straw man to defend straw men.


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