By MARY CAROLAN
The European Stability Mechanism Treaty breaches the Irish Constitution, European Union law and the treaties of the EU on several grounds, Independent TD Thomas Pringle has argued before the High Court.
Mr Pringle’s action raises matters of “enormous importance” for the State and is fundamentally concerned with the rule of law in the State and the EU, his counsel John Rogers SC said.
The ESM treaty of February 2012 will dilute the financial sovereignty of this State and its capacity to say yes or no in the realm of economic and monetary matters, the Donegal South West TD contends. The treaty will also give officers of the State, particularly the Minister for Finance, powers beyond those conferred on him by law.
Mr Pringle claims the ESM treaty is inextricably intertwined with the Fiscal Stability Treaty approved by the people in last month’s referendum and he argues Ireland cannot formally ratify the ESM treaty next month, as intended by the Government, without first putting that to the people in a referendum.
He claims the treaty breaches the Constitution and other EU treaties on a number of grounds, including that it provides for establishment of an autonomous financial institution, akin to a bank, with the power to grant financial assistance beyond circumstances permitted by the EU treaties
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