Home > Irish set to vote ’no’ to treaty (video)
Early counting in Ireland’s referendum on the Lisbon treaty puts the "no" camp in the lead.
Ireland is expected to reject the Lisbon treaty, the country’s justice minister admitted today.
Justice Minister Dermot Ahern said unofficial indications showed the results of yesterday’s referendum on the EU treaty were going against the "yes" camp.
Ahern said: "Based on the unofficial early figures it’s not looking too good for the "yes" side.
"It’s still all unofficial but the indications are that the ’no’ side could win."
The first official result has also showed a "no" win. Waterford, the first of Ireland’s 43 constituencies to return a result, announced 20,812 ’no’ votes to 17,502 voting ’yes’.
Tallies from count centres around the country suggested the overall decision was edging towards a ’no’.
Ireland is the only EU country to have held a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, though 18 of the 27 members states have already ratified it.
The main Irish political parties, including Taoiseach Brian Cowen’s leading government party Fianna Fail, have fought hard for a ’yes’ vote, with Sinn Fein campaigning against the treaty.
A final result is expected this afternoon.
Carl Dinnen’s noon report
The vast majority of the established political organisations in the Republic had backed a yes vote to allow reforms of the EU to go ahead.
If they are defeated in the only referendum being held in Europe on the treaty, the whole process will be thrown into uncertainty.