The US Department of Defense has banned its military bases located in Europe from concluding contracts for the purchase of energy resources from Russia. About it it says in the official publication of the US government Federal Register.
The Pentagon has amended the annex to the Federal Defense Procurement Regulations (DFARS) “to enhance energy security in Europe.” At the same time, the ban does not apply to facilities in Asia – for example, it does not apply to parts of Turkey located on this continent, the military department said.
On August 20, US President Joe Biden issued a decree calling for additional measures against “certain Russian pipelines for the export of energy resources in the event of a national emergency.” We are talking about projects that allegedly weaken energy security in Europe (including Ukraine), as well as the “eastern flank of NATO and the European Union.” US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken also announced the adoption of new bans on Russian companies. The State Department has submitted a report to the US Congress, where the objects of sanctions are named.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that Kiev sees the Kremlin’s dangerous geopolitical weapon in the Russian Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. According to Zelensky, he does not really believe that all the obligations under the agreement will be fulfilled. The head of the Ukrainian state said he would ask American leader Joe Biden to intervene in the situation. Zelensky also pointed out that the Nord Stream 2 deal concluded between the United States and Germany cannot guarantee Ukraine’s energy security and poses a threat to all EU countries. According to him, the whole world realizes the destructive nature of gas transit via Nord Stream 2, which will lead to an acute shortage of gas in Ukraine due to inflated prices.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov named the advantages of Nord Stream 2 for Europe. According to him, claims that the pipeline will increase their dependence on gas from Russia are unfounded. He said that Nord Stream 2 will strengthen Europe’s energy security for decades to come. “We regard the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline as an exclusively commercial, mutually beneficial project,” Lavrov said.
The Minister stressed that with the commissioning of the gas pipeline, additional diversification of gas transit routes will be ensured without increasing its volumes at the moment. In addition, sustainable gas supplies to European consumers can be carried out along the shortest path, which will lead to a decrease in the “ecological footprint” from its transportation. “That is why the European capitals interested in the project are firmly in favor of completing the construction of the gas pipeline,” the head of the department emphasized.
On August 27, it became known that German officials offered Gazprom to sell the operator of Nord Stream 2. The limitation of the capacity of Nord Stream 2, associated with the effect of the updated EU gas directive, can be circumvented only if Gazprom sells the pipeline. The defeat of Nord Stream 2 AG (a subsidiary of Gazprom) in the Supreme Land Court of Dusseldorf, if it cannot be challenged, effectively means that the Russian company will be able to use only half of the pipeline’s capacity. European regulations require the upstream company and the infrastructure operator to be separated. Otherwise, 50 percent of the capacity must be reserved for an independent supplier. However, in Russia, Gazprom has a monopoly on the export of gas through the pipeline, so no company will be able to fill the other half of the pipeline.
On August 27, German Ambassador to Russia Geza Andreas von Geir estimated the timing of the completion of the construction of Nord Stream 2. According to him, only a few kilometers of the gas pipeline remains to be laid and it will be completed.