Irish reject EU's Lisbon Treaty

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The Lisbon Treaty has been rejected by Irish voters, sparking a crisis for plans to reform European Union structures. A total of 53.4 per cent voted to reject the treaty, while 46.6 per cent voted in favour. All but 10 constituencies rejected the treaty, with a total of 752,451 voting in favour of Lisbon and 862,415 votes against. Turnout was 53.1 per cent.

Tallies from early on in the count this morning showed the No campaign appeared to be winning in most constituencies across the State, with significant majorities emerging from rural and urban working class areas in particular.

Luxembourg Premier and Finance Minister Jean-Claude Juncker said the defeat of the Lisbon Treaty represents a new "European crisis. ...Ireland said 'no' to the Lisbon Treaty,'' Juncker told reporters in Luxembourg today. "This is not good for Europe."

There is concern in other EU countries about the impact of the decision by Irish voters, and the French and German governments are expected to make a joint statement later today once the Irish result is known. Ireland was the only country to hold a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty.

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