Czech leader says EU treaty might not pass

BRUSSELS, June 20 (UPI) -- The Czech Republic says it cannot promise that a key European Union treaty will be approved there, officials said Friday.

The Financial Times reported that following Ireland's rejection of the landmark Lisbon Treaty, which is aimed at streamlining EU operations, Czech leaders said they cannot guarantee that national lawmakers will sign off on the document.


"I am not going to force members of my parliament to support Lisbon, and I would not bet 100 crowns on a Czech 'Yes'," diplomats quoted Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek as telling his fellow leaders.

The Lisbon Treaty is being scrutinized by the Czech constitutional court, which is considering whether the document is compatible with Czech law. The court's verdict is not expected until October at the soonest, the newspaper reported.

Following Ireland's rejection of the treaty, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have said no EU membership for applicant countries in southeastern Europe unless the Lisbon Treaty came into force.

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