Thursday, 24 May, 2018

USA warns sanctions on Nord Stream 2 possible

Media: trump urged Merkel to abandon the “Nord stream-2” Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline raises intelligence concerns say US
Sammy Stanley | 18 May, 2018, 15:48

Congress passed the legislation in response to Russia's intervention in Ukraine and its suspected US election interference, giving the government authority to act against any Russian energy projects including Nord Stream 2, the envoy said.

2 Nord stream will pass along the Nord stream gas pipeline under the Baltic sea to the German city of Greifswald to minimize gas flow through Ukraine.

"Any pipeline project - and there are many multiple pipeline projects in the world that are potentially covered by this sanctions authority - is in an elevated position of sanctions risk", Oudkirk said.

"After our exit from the European Union, will this be a sensible extra measure that we might take that might assist with our diplomatic efforts?"

Despite taking a hard line against Russian Federation in recent years over its aggression in Ukraine and other matters, Merkel has defended the pipeline project, saying Germany badly needs to secure its gas supplies. It is due to go online at the end of next year.

"The new project would permit new technologies to be placed along the pipeline route and that is a threat".

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The United States also opposes the Turkish Stream offshore pipeline that would bring Russian gas via the Black Sea to Turkey for the same reasons, she said.

"Germany is not doing anything against the interests of Ukraine".

US President Donald Trump plans to promote US liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports at a meeting next Thursday (6 July) in Warsaw with a dozen leaders from Central and Eastern Europe, a region heavily reliant on Russian supplies.

Jens Mueller, a spokesman for Nord Stream 2, dismissed concerns from the US and several European countries, saying the new pipeline would merely be one of many sources of natural gas for Europe.

The US believes that Moscow will be able to exert greater influence over Berlin as well as cut about $1 billion a year in transit fees paid to Ukraine for piping natural gas to Europe, and that dependence on the pipeline will weaken the impact of western sanctions on Moscow. "We're neutral on the means of conveyance", Oudkirk said, noting that Europe could get gas from the Caspian Sea, Eastern Mediterranean, Algeria and, eventually, the United States and Australia, reducing its dependence on Russian energy sources.

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