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IFA Munster vice-president Seán O’Leary (Letters, May 29) appears to accept that Ireland will retain its veto on a world trade deal post-Lisbon.
That is understandable given recent statements both from Brussels and the pro-treaty camp here, but it is not substantiated by any reference to the text of the treaty.
In fact, nowhere does it state that any country will retain a veto on any deal affecting agriculture.
Article 188, C section, states “the council shall also act unanimously for the negotiation and conclusion of agreements”. But only in the specific areas of “trade in cultural and audiovisual services” and “trade in social, education and health services”.
There is no provision for a veto on any other area, and certainly not in relation to agriculture.
I think that answers Mr O’Leary’s query as to why the Government has not said it will veto any deal detrimental to Irish agriculture.
It cannot because, post-Lisbon, it will not have the power to do so. It is simple as that.
That is why farmers ought to vote no.
Martin Ferris TD
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