PM told French President he will order referendum if plans to give Brussels sweeping new powers approved
David Cameron has privately warned EU leaders he will call a referendum in Britain if they press ahead with plans to create a ‘federal Europe’.
Diplomatic sources in Paris yesterday said the Prime Minister has privately warned French President Francois Hollande that he will order a referendum if plans to give Brussels sweeping new powers are approved.
He is thought to have repeated the warning to other EU leaders.
With European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso calling this week for a new treaty to create a ‘federation of nation states’ by 2014, the Prime Minister’s stance suggests the Coalition could be plunged into a referendum debate before the next election.
Government lawyers are reported to have already started work on how to deal with a referendum on a ‘recommendation that Britain stays in the EU without a political union’.
Tory sources last night said Mr Cameron was planning to make a ‘significant’ speech on Europe in the coming months to address the growing move towards federalism.
Respected French newspaper Liberation reported that Mr Cameron had raised the issue with Mr Hollande when the French President visited London in July.
A French diplomat said the Prime Minister had warned that he could only win a referendum if the EU agreed a fundamental renegotiation of the treaties, with some powers coming back to Britain.