The European Union summit, in Lisbon, arrived at an agreement on the treaty in discussion and announced its signature on the 13th of December, in Lisbon.
The event is being presented as "historic" and as a great accomplishment by the Socialist Party/Sócrates Government. It is however a meticulously prepared fabrication to elude the peoples of the European Union and , domestically, to cover up the devastating consequences of its right-wing policies and hide the growing discontentment and struggle that develops from the North to the South of the country, that had, precisely on the doors of the summit, a truly historic massive expression.
The agreement around the so-called "reform treaty" is not good but bad news for Portugal and the Portuguese, and we note as particularly grave and significant the identical positions expressed by the Socialist (social democrat) and Social-Democrat Party (right wing) on this matter.
For Portugal, the treaty, if signed and ratified, will mean new and serious losses of sovereignty and of positions in the European Union institutions, namely by the end of the rotating presidencies of the Council, the loss of a permanent Commission member, and a reduction in the number of deputies in the European Parliament. It also entails a deepening of the process of European capitalist integration at the service of big capital and the great powers, beginning with Germany, who conducted the whole process. It means a reinforcement of neoliberalism, federalism and militarism, and a new step towards the configuration of the European Union as a economic-political-military imperialist block articulated with NATO and the US to dominate the world.
The agreement now announced is an important step in consummating a cynical mystification that the PCP will not tire of revealing: the agreed text is no more and no less that the so-called "constitutional treaty", rejected earlier with the decisive contribution of the French and Dutch "No", and presented now with new clothes to facilitate its anti-democratic imposition to the peoples of Europe.
The PCP will pursue its fight against a process of integration and a treaty so profoundly contrary to sovereignty, to national interests, and to the cause of social progress and peace in Europe and the world.
The PCP demands a broad national debate and a popular consultation that can give the Portuguese people the possibility of pronouncing itself on the treaty through a binding referendum. Holding referenda is a democratic imperative broadly claimed throughout the European Union. A demand which had important expression in the recent joint position that, upon PCP's indicative, was subscribed by 29 communist, Workers', progressive and Left Parties from European Union and also in the meeting of the European United Left / Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL), held on 16-18 October, in Lisbon.
An immediate decision is required on this issue. Now that the treaty's text in known in its entirety, the Government has no further pretext to continue to elude its electoral commitment to hold a referendum. It is not serious that Jose Socrates invoke the fact that the treaty has not yet been signed in order to continue to postpone a decision on the indispensable democratic debate and popular consultation.
The 18th of October and Portugal are negatively associated with the approval of the European Union treaty. But this date is positively marked by news of important popular struggles in other countries of Europe. In Portugal and for the Portuguese it will mainly be marked by the historic manifestation summoned by the CGTP (General Trade-Union Confederation), which brought together more than 200 thousand people in a demonstration of great combativeness, trust in the reasons for struggle, and affirmation of hope for a better future.