„I appeal to you to vote ‘yes’ on June 1 in the referendum in
Holland. I appeal to you to mobilise the members of your organisations,
your relatives and friends including your Dutch friends to vote Yes.
Remember every vote counts!” – writes vice-president of Unia &
Polska Foundation in Warsaw in an open letter to Poles living in the
Netherlands and their Dutch co-citizens.
Open letter to Poles living in Holland
Warsaw, 19th of May 2005
Dear Sir, Madam,
The date of the referendum on the Constitutional Treaty is
approaching. The text of the treaty contains the legislation which the
EU has introduced up till now. The Treaty also streamlines decision
making procedures in the EU. In addition it strengthens the role
democratic institutions both parliaments in the member states and the
European Parliament. And the Treaty lays the foundations under a common
foreign and security policy for the Union. In a word the Treaty adapts
procedures in the enlarged EU to the challenges of the 21 st
We will soon be ratifying the Treaty in Poland. I believe that
we will vote for the Treaty. That, however, will not be enough. If the
Treaty is to go into force it has to be ratified in each of the member
states. The failure of the Treaty in any of the member states will mark
a major blow to the organisation which we joined only a year ago.
Membership of the EU marks not only enables us to modernise
our country but also gives us the chance to develop in peace. We have
been deprived of such an opportunity for hundreds of years! For Poles
living in Holland the fact that both our countries are in the same
organisation means the gradual disappearance of barriers which
once divided us from each other.
A rejection of the Treaty will mean a major crisis in the EU. This
will lead to a paralysis of decision making and open divisions between
member states. Poland and Poles will certainly suffer as a result.
This is why I appeal to you to vote ‘yes’ on June 1 in the
referendum in Holland. I appeal to you to mobilise the members of your
organisations, your relatives and friends including your Dutch friends
to vote Yes. Remember every vote counts!
Fundacja Unia & Polska
* Krzysztof Bobiński was born in the United Kingdom in 1949 of
Polish parents who settled in London as émigrés after participating in
the Second World War. He studied history at Oxford University. He was
the Warsaw correspondent for the Financial Times from 1976 to 2000.
Since then he published Unia & Polska, a magazine. Currently he
works in the Unia & Polska Foundation which played a leading role
in the 2003 accession referendum in Poland. The foundation seeks to
promote European integration in Poland.