Irish Yes vote clears obstacle to EU enlargement

IRELAND - Ireland yesterday ratified the Nice treaty at the second attempt, with an emphatic Yes vote that removes the biggest obstacle in the path to the enlargement of the European Union.

Bertie Ahern, Irish prime minister, said the referendum result showed that Ireland "wants to welcome the nations of the applicant countries with open arms".

The Yes vote - carried by a margin of 62.9 per cent to 37.1 per cent - was interpreted by the markets as a sign that 10 new countries will be able to jo

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