Poland will ratify Lisbon if Ireland will


Poland's President Lech Kaczynski will only sign the European Union's Lisbon Treaty if Ireland approves it in a new referendum, he said in an exclusive interview.

"If Ireland makes another decision - but not under pressure and without changing its constitution - in the same way as the first, then Poland will not place a block on the treaty" - Kaczynski said, adding - "and I myself will not place a block, because the Polish parliament has already approved the treaty."

The conservative Kaczynski, who is considered a eurosceptic, had said that ratifying the treaty now would be "pointless" after voters in Ireland - the only EU member state to hold a referendum on the treaty - rejected it last month.

Warsaw's lawmakers voted in April to ratify the charter, aimed at streamlining EU decision-making in a bloc which has expanded from 15 to 27 members since 2004 - mainly with the influx of former east and central European communist countries, such as Poland itself.

However, under the Polish constitution, the presidential seal of approval is still needed.

Kaczynski's announcement was a blow for French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who has set himself the task of finding a way to overcome the Irish rejection during France's six-month EU presidency, which began on 1st July.

While EU leaders agreed on the Lisbon Treaty in December 2007, it must be ratified by all 27 member states to come into force.