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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 June, 2004, 10:21 GMT 11:21 UK
European elections: The manifestos

A guide to what UK parties are offering on 10 June:


The Conservatives are against a European constitution and want a referendum on the issue as soon as possible.

They support further strengthening the single European market, but will continue to oppose euro membership and harmonisation of tax rates.

Tory MEPs are committed to getting rid of 25% of existing EU legislations and introducing "sunset clauses" in new laws.

The party also has a raft of proposals to combat alleged EU fraud and it will fight plans for congestion charging and road tolls. It would keep the British opt-out on the working time directive.

On the environment, the Tories would ensure existing legislation is applied uniformly and that rules are designed to work with, not against, business. The party wants greater reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and is calling for the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) to be scrapped.

The Tories are against a single European foreign policy and will insist all defence initiatives are carried out within the framework of Nato.

Their candidates are standing everywhere except Northern Ireland.


Labour backs the proposed European constitution, and says Tory demands for it to be re-negotiated would lead to withdrawal from the EU, wrecking the economic gains the single market has brought.

It says Britain will retain its veto in areas such as tax, social security, defence, foreign affairs and key areas of criminal law. But Tony Blair has said he will give the public the final say in a referendum. Labour is also committed to a referendum on entry to the single currency, once five economic tests have been met.

On the environment, Labour says it will use Britain's presidency of the EU in 2005 to make member states deliver their Kyoto climate change commitments.

On foreign policy, Labour says Britain should not have to choose between Europe and the US, but adds the EU should be able to act independently, "where Nato chooses not too".

It is pushing for reform of the CAP - but rejects Tory calls to withdraw from the CFP which, it says, would mean the UK having to renegotiate its EU membership.

Labour has said it will maintain Britain's right to operate its own border controls and, if necessary, opt-out of EU measures on immigration.

Their candidates are standing everywhere except Northern Ireland.


The Lib Dems are the most unequivocally pro-European of the three main parties. They are enthusiastic supporters of the single currency and the European constitution, provided Britain retains its veto in key areas. But, on both issues, they insist they would accept the verdict of the British people in a referendum.

The Lib Dems also want the removal of all remaining trade barriers in Europe, particularly in financial services, and tougher action on unfair monopolies and state subsidies.

They want new fiscal rules to allow more flexible government borrowing and greater freedom of labour movement. But they believe social policy - such as the working time directive - should remain the preserve of national governments.

The Lib Dems want reform of the CAP, to promote organic farming and create a level playing field for developing countries. They would reform the CFP to prevent over-fishing.

They want closer co-operation between member states on defence, but they stop short of advocating a single foreign policy.

Their candidates are standing everywhere except Northern Ireland.


The United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) wants Britain to withdraw from the European Union at the earliest opportunity.

It is anxious to distance itself from fellow nationalists the BNP, stressing in its literature that it is the "only moderate, democratic party" to advocate such a move.

It wants Britain to be part of a free-trade area, similar to the ones Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Mexico belong to.

The party claims the EU has become more bureaucratic and corrupt, as well as a drain on the UK's resources.

Britain's influence within Europe is shrinking as the Union expands, it says, and there would be no job losses as a result of pulling out.

UKIP is urging voters not to wait for a referendum on the EU constitution, but to use the 10 June polls to register their discontent.

Their candidates are standing everywhere except Northern Ireland.


The Greens are pushing their anti-war credentials, claiming to be the only party to have consistently opposed the US-led invasion of Iraq.

The party, which is hoping to increase its tally of MEPs from two to six, wants immediate withdrawal of British troops.

It also opposes the single European currency, which it describes as a "fundamentally anti-democratic project".

The Greens are likely to come out against the EU constitution, although the issue has yet to be debated by the party as a whole.

The Greens are also critical of the growth and stability pact and single interest rates for all member states.

The party say it is at the forefront of European efforts to ban GM foods. It also promotes sustainable alternatives to fossil fuels and nuclear energy.

Their candidates are standing in all regions.


Plaid believes an independent Wales would be able to win more influence within the EU and translate that into economic benefits.

Party president, Dafydd Iwan, claims the 10 June election will be seen by many voters as a referendum on the UK government's handling the Iraq war.

Plaid's candidates are standing only in Wales.


The SNP remains committed to Scottish independence within Europe.

But its stance on the EU is more critical than it used to be, particularly on the controversial issue of fishing rights.

The SNP says it has a campaign with three pillars - fishing; the council tax; Iraq and the issue of trust in Tony Blair.

The party is fielding candidates only in Scotland.


Expelled Labour MP George Galloway's new anti-war group has said it wants to use the 10 June vote as a referendum on Tony Blair's policy in Iraq.

The party also rejects the European constitution, the euro, the stability and growth pact and what it calls the EU's "Fortress Europe" approach to immigration.

It says it will "reject the Europe of big business and the multinational corporations which the EU represents".

The party is fielding candidates in all English regions and Wales, but not Scotland or Northern Ireland.


The BNP stands for British withdrawal from the EU, which it says forces "unnecessary, costly and repressive legislation into every aspect of daily life".

The party says it will be campaigning on crime, asylum, globalisation and the collapse of social structures such as the family, "without the constraints imposed by political correctness".

It also wants "complete control" of Britain's borders to tackle illegal immigration, which it says is the country's most pressing problem.

The party has candidates in all regions except Northern Ireland.


The EDP says it wants European cooperation and trade but not a "political entity" which undermines national independence, sovereignty and democratic institutions.

It was founded to campaign for an English Parliament in the wake of devolution to Scotland and Wales.

Among its other demands are recognition for traditional counties, including the reunification of Yorkshire, and greater autonomy for Cornwall.

The party is fielding candidates in the South East, North West, East of England, Yorkshire and the Humber and London.


Claims to be Europe's first anti-abortion political Party.

It seeks to "ensure the right to life of all", through peaceful campaigning. It says it is opposed to any form of violent protest.

Prolife candidates are standing in the North West, East of England and the South East regions.


The Christian Peoples Alliance is a party rooted in the historic Christian faith that says it wants to demonstrate the love of God through political service.

The party opposes abortion and euthanasia and says it wants policies that nurture families and communities, as well as helping the poor.

It is also campaigning for the Christian faith to be included in the preamble of the proposed EU constitution.

The party is fielding candidates in London and the South East.


This group wants more help for rural communities and protection for family farms.

It also wants a complete renegotiation of Britain's EU membership, including a new deal on the CAP.

The Countryside Party is fielding candidates in the South West and North West.


The party wants to improve the quality of life for people aged over 50, including priority medical treatment, free personal as well as medical care and free television licences.

It also wants pensions pegged at 50% of earnings and index-linked, the abolition of standing charges on utility bills and free off-peak travel.

The party's candidates are standing only in the South East.


The Liberal Party consists of Liberals who opposed the merger of the Liberal and Social Democrat Parties in 1988.

It says the European elections give voters the chance to register their opposition to Britain joining the single currency.

It also wants to replace the EU with a Commonwealth of European nations who would cooperate on issues of mutual concern but keep their own currencies, raise their own taxes and generally run their own affairs.

The Liberals are standing only in the North West.


Unlike the other anti-war parties standing for the European Parliament, the Peace Party opposes military action of any kind "and all military alliances".

It wants the EU to agree ways in which people can live together in harmony and to settle disputes by peaceful means only.

The Guildford-based group, founded by Quaker peace activist John Morris, is fielding nine candidates in the South East.

The party is standing only in the South East.


Operation Christian Vote started life as a voters' registration drive among Britain's Christian community.

It will be calling for the outlawing of abortions and human embryo research. It also values the relationship between a man and a woman in the "covenant of marriage, over and above any other domestic arrangement".

The party is only fielding candidates in Scotland.


The SSP is campaigning on an anti-war, anti-Tony Blair platform, urging voters to "send a Socialist to the European parliament".

It pledges to fight for an "independent socialist Scotland", stand up for workers' rights, environmental protection and withdrawal from the Common Fisheries policy.

It is against the European constitution and the euro and wants the abolition of the European Central Bank, which, it says, "is driven by right wing, free market ideology".

The party is only fielding candidates in Scotland.


The Scottish Green Party became a separate party from the party in England and Wales in 1990. It is fielding seven candidates in the European elections.

Its policies are in line with the recently launched pan-European Green alliance - it is against the euro and in favour of an EU fair trade zone, renewable energy and an end to nuclear power.


Scottish Wind Watch is opposed to "environmentally insensitive" wind-power schemes which it says are likely to be damaging to landscape, wildlife habitats, historic sites, and public enjoyment of the countryside.

It sees the European election as an opportunity to gain national coverage for the wind-power issue. It says that it wants to wake up the people of Scotland who are still largely unaware of what is being planned for its wild places.

The party is only standing in Scotland.


Lawyer Jim Allister takes over from Ian Paisley, who has served as an MEP for 25 years, as the candidate for the Democratic Unionist Party.

If elected, he has said he will use his position as an MEP to campaign against joining the euro and signing up to the European constitution.

Mr Allister also believes EU enlargement "will impact adversely on Northern Ireland, as grant aid now moves eastwards and our nation is called upon to contribute even more".

The DUP is standing in Northern Ireland only.


The SDLP is a pro-European party and claims to have real influence in Brussels and Strasbourg through its membership of the Socialist group of MEPs.

It claims to be the only party in a position to continue to advocate strongly for Northern Ireland at European level.

Candidate Martin Morgan aims to build on the legacy of former SDLP leader and MEP John Hume.

The SDLP is standing in Northern Ireland only.


Ulster Unionist Party MEP Jim Nicholson describes himself as a "euro realist".

He campaigns against the European constitution and attacks red tape and corruption.

He pledges to continue using his influence to "make sure that while we are in Europe, Europe won't dictate to us".

The UUP is standing in Northern Ireland only.


Sinn Fein candidate Bairbre de Brun says she wants to use the European Parliament to further the Republican "all Ireland" agenda.

She says she also wants to further the equality agenda in Ireland and across Europe; "while at the same time making EU institutions more open, more transparent and more real to people".

Sinn Fein also wants want to see the Irish language given the status of an official working language of the EU.

Sinn Fein is standing in Northern Ireland only.


Candidate Eamonn McCann is standing on anti-Iraq war, anti-sectarianism platform.

The group also campaigns against globalisation, an end to the 11 plus exam, for better funded public services and against privatisation. It also campaigns for a cleaner, sustainable environment.

The SEA is fielding one candidate, in Northern Ireland only.


The group stood at the last European elections as The Left Alliance. It says socialists and environmentalists are natural allies and argues that capitalism is a root cause of the current environmental "crisis".

It believes the UK should stay in the EU but the union is profoundly undemocratic and in need of "radical change".

The party opposes both the euro and the proposed EU constitution.

The alliance is only fielding candidates in Yorkshire and the Humber.


The Christian Democratic Party comes under the umbrella of Operation Christian Vote, which is itself fielding candidates in Scotland.

It will be calling for the outlawing of abortions and human embryo research. It also values the relationship between a man and a woman in the "covenant of marriage, over and above any other domestic arrangement".

The party is only fielding candidates in Wales.


The party campaigns to defend public services against privatisation and campaign for a public-owned rail network.

Repealing anti-trade union laws is another strand of Forward Wales' policy platform, as are its calls for a "sustainable" economy and energy policy.

The party says it is "actively anti-racist and we want no part in imperialist wars".

The party is only standing in Wales.


The Pensioners' Party says it sees Europe as an opportunity to ensure Britain's pensioners have a "fairer, more wealthy and dignified" role in society.

The party has only one candidate, standing in the West Midlands.


The party, which is fielding a single candidate, Rev Richard Rodgers, in the West Midlands, promotes peace and tolerance, and a solution to conflict in the Middle East.



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