Czech President Finally Signs EU's Lisbon Treaty

Czech President Vaclav Klaus has finally given up his resistance to the Lisbon Treaty and opened the way for reform of the European Union.

Czech President Vaclav Klaus signed the Lisbon Treaty on Tuesday, just a few hours after the Czech constitutional court ruled that the treaty did not break Czech law.

He was the last EU leader to do so, having insisted on waiting for the decision of the constitutional court as well as for a commitment from an EU summit that Germans and Hungarians would not be able to claim compensation for loss of property after the Second World War.

Following Klaus's signing, the head of the EU Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, said "no further unnecessary delays should prevent the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty."

The treaty allows the EU to speed up decision-making, increase the power of the European Parliament and appoint a longer-term president and a more powerful foreign representative.

Now that all 27 EU countries have ratified the Lisbon reforms, named after the Portuguese capital where they were agreed upon, the treaty will come into effect on January 1, 2010.
World media monitoring