Talks with Russia must prioritize Nord Stream 2 to deter Putin, Ukraine's Naftogaz CEO says
The CEO of Ukrainian state energy giant Naftogaz says it is absurd for Nord Stream 2 not to be among the top priorities of international talks with the Kremlin.His comments come shortly after a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council on Wednesday. It was the second high-level meeting this week between Western officials and Russia after high-profile talks between the U.S. and Kremlin officials on Monday. A further meeting is taking place at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in Vienna Thursday.
The Chief of the Ukrainian Energy Group Naftogaz, Juri Vitrenko, sees the Baltic Sea Pipeline Nord Stream 2 as a preparation for a Russian invasion. "We are 100 percent sure that Nord Stream 2 has the sole purpose to turn off Ukraine at Gastransit," said Vitrenko of the "Süddeutsche Zeitung" from Monday. Russian President Vladimir Putin prepares a military invasion, "and he wants to ensure that there is no negative consequences for trade in Europe." © Odd Andersen The Chief of the Ukrainian Energy Group Naftogaz, Juri Vitrenko, sees the preparation for a Russian invasion under construction of the Baltic Sea Pipeline Nord Stream 2.
The State Group Naftogaz operates the 38,000-kilometer gas network through Ukraine, which previously transported Russian gas to Central Europe. Moscow goal is to turn off this transit, Vitrenko said the newspaper. It also did not change commitments to extend existing transit contracts. These allowed Russia to book and pay for capacities, but nevertheless to divert the gas through the Baltic Sea.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken to visit Ukraine as US-Russia tensions escalate
Blinken will be in Kyiv on Tuesday to show U.S. support after last week's talks with Moscow failed to resolve disagreements over Ukraine.Blinken’s trip comes as Russia threatened to escalate conflict with Ukraine should the United States and its European allies not concede security and political support for the eastern European country.
In the case of a war, however, there will be no lines by Ukraine, "Vitrenko warned. "The first bombs will apply to the pipelines."
Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) had recently emphasized, it was a purely private sector, not a political project at the Baltic Pipeline. Vitrenko rejected this. "The only economic logic is that Putin can punish Ukraine for their preuropean choice." Germany also benefit Germany where the north stream pipeline ends. "For me, this is difficult to accept from a moral point of view," said the Naftogaz boss.
Nord Stream 2 has already been completed. Currently, the Federal Network Agency checks whether all legal requirements are available for operation. A decision is expected for the summer.
within the federal government there are different positions to the project. In particular, the Greens have expressed several times critical to the pipeline.
ILO / CHA
Ukraine Advises Its Olympic Athletes to Not Take Photos With Russians in Beijing .
The Games are typically a way for athletes to use sport as unification, just as the five Olympic interlocking rings imply. © Photo by ANDREJ ISAKOVIC/AFP via Getty Images Gold medalist Russia's Mariya Lasitskene (L) and bronze medalist Ukraine's Yaroslava Mahuchikh celebrate after the women's high jump final during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on August 7, 2021. As war tensions mount between Russia and Ukraine, officials in Ukraine hope their athletes aren't locked arm in arm with their Russian rivals.