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German-Russia gas pipeline ‘unacceptable’, threat to entire Europe: Ukraine

German-Russia gas pipeline ‘unacceptable’, threat to entire Europe: Ukraine

German-Russia gas pipeline ‘unacceptable’, threat to entire Europe: Ukraine
September 01
11:51 2019

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has denounced as “unacceptable” a Russian pipeline project set to send gas to Germany, saying the plan poses a threat to the entire Europe.

Zelensky made the comments against the Russian Nord Stream 2 project after a meeting with his Polish counterpart, Andrzej Duda, in Warsaw on Saturday.

“We hold the same position as Poland; Nord Stream 2 is unacceptable and it threatens Europe as a whole,” Zelensky told reporters. “We want the diversification of sources of energy delivery within the US, Poland and Ukraine triangle.”

Poland's President Andrzej Duda (R) and Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky give a press conference following talks on bilateral relations in front of the Presidential Place in Warsaw on August 31, 2019. (Photo by AFP)

Reports said the US, Poland and Ukraine had agreed later in the day in Warsaw to enhance trilateral cooperation aimed at securing energy supplies in the Baltic region and, in particular, gear Ukraine's gas infrastructure to deliveries from the West.

Russian Gazprom's Nord Stream 2 project plans to connect Russia and Germany via the Baltic Sea, bypassing Poland, Ukraine and the Baltic states.

Gazprom is jointly implementing the Nord Stream with Western partners Uniper, Wintershall, Engie, OMV and Shell. The pipeline will be 1,220 kilometers long and should be completed before the end of 2019.

The 12-billion-dollar project envisages the construction and operation of two gas pipeline branches with a total throughput capacity of 55 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year from the coast of Russia through the Baltic Sea to Germany.

Kiev, Warsaw and Washington oppose the pipeline, claiming it will increase Europe's reliance on Russian energy supplies and that Moscow could later use the project for exerting political pressure.

Germany currently imports around a third of its gas from Russia through Ukraine.

Russia has decreased the amount of gas it delivers to Ukraine since the rise of a pro-Western government in Kiev in 2014. Ukraine’s Western allies have imposed sanctions on Russia after re-the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea rejoined Russia that year.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has faced increasing criticism over the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. High-ranking German politicians from different parties have called on her to stop the project, which they say would affect Germany’s ties with major allies in the Baltic region, especially with Poland.

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