Wednesday, February 21

Russia Blames Sanctions for Shutdown of Nord Stream 1 Pipeline

The gas war it never stops escalating. The Russian government spokesman has blamed the western sanctions of the interruption of gas supply which reached Germany through the North Stream 1. The gas pipeline has not pumped fuel since Friday due to a breakdown in its turbines, according to the explanation provided by Gazprom. This latest setback has revived concern in Europe, staged throughout the day in the markets. The price of reference gas on the continent rose by 30% shortly after the opening.

“The problems with gas shipments they arose due to the sanctions that Western countries imposed on our country and several of our companies,” said the Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, in a press appearance collected by the Interfax agency. “No other reason could have caused this pumping problem.”

Gazprom announced on Friday that the Nord Stream 1, the main conduit for the arrival of Russian gas in Europe, will remain closed “indefinitely” until “defects in the operability of its equipment are eliminated”. According to the Russian state gas company, the problem originated after a oil leak in a turbine engine. But the suspicions of the West were not long in manifesting themselves, since Gazprom’s announcement came shortly after the G7 countries announced an agreement to put a cap on the price they pay for Russian oil, a measure with which they intend to reduce the capacity from Moscow to finance its war in Ukraine.

“Total confusion” over sanctions

The spokesman for Vladimir Putin stated that the sanctions have generated a “complete confusion” in the legal and practical aspects of everything that concerns the maintenance of the gas pipeline turbines. And, according to his government, those same sanctions have so far prevented Siemens Energy –responsible for the management and maintenance of the pipeline– to repair the fault in the turbine, a thesis disputed by both the European Union and the Siemens company itself.

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“We see constant attempts to escape responsibility and blame ourselves,” added Peskov before pointing to the West as responsible for the energy crisis plaguing Europe. Asked if the supply could be resumed if sanctions were eased, Peskov replied emphatically: “There is no question.”

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