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Minister Creighton calls for greater democratic accountability in the European Union

Minister for European Affairs, Lucinda Creighton is hosting a meeting of the 27 Ministers for European Affairs, plus Croatia, in Dublin today.

A particular focus of the meeting will be democratic legitimacy and accountability. This issue is a core element of European Council President Herman Van Rompuy’s work on Economic and Monetary Union.

As a basis for this discussion, Minister Creighton has commissioned a paper by Brigid Laffan, Professor of European Politics at University College Dublin. The paper poses specific questions to guide the ministerial debate. The Minister has also invited representatives of the European Parliament, the Oireachtas and the Northern Ireland Executive to join the meeting.

Commenting in advance of this discussion, Minister Creighton said:

The recent crisis has shown that the people of Europe first saw the Union as part of the problem, but now they want to see it more as part of the solution. The Irish Presidency’s focus is on solutions for growth and jobs, but people also need to feel more connected, involved, engaged, informed and listened to. As we take the next steps down the road of closer financial and economic integration, we need a serious debate about how to ensure their voices are truly heard.

Ministers will also take the opportunity to consider prospects for the further enlargement of the European Union. Representatives of the five current candidate countries (Iceland, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey) have also been invited and on Monday 21st January Minister Creighton will host a working lunch to allow for an exchange of views on current enlargement issues.

Read the full press release