“Nord Stream 2” and Ukraine – statements by Joe Biden and Angela Merkel
The United States and Germany are united in the issue of countering Russian aggression. US president Joe Biden told this in Washington during his press-conference with Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel. During a meeting both leaders paid a significant attention to the Russian “Nord Stream 2” gas pipeline, UA reports.
US president and German chancellor stressed on unacceptability of blackmail Moscow employs against Kyiv. That is the transit of gas bypassing Ukraine after the Russian gas pipeline is put into operation.
“We agree on our continued support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. We stand together and we’ll continue to stand together to defend our eastern flank allies at NATO against Russian aggression. And while I reiterated my concerns about Nord Stream 2, Chancellor Merkel are absolutely united in our conviction that Russia must not be allowed to use energy as a weapon to coerce or threaten its neighbors” – Joe Biden said.
In turn Angela Merkel noted that Germany’s idea is that Ukraine should remain a transit country.
“Ukraine has a right like any country to territorial sovereignty. That is why we are also engaged in the Minsk process. And that we will also act actively if Russia does not honour Ukraine’s right to transit. That means, for me, Nord Stream 2 is an additional project and not a project instead of the transit of gas through Ukraine” – Angela Merkel underlined.
To remind, “Nord Stream 2” is a Russian gas pipeline being constructed bypassing Ukraine since 2018. It’s being laid on the bottom of the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany. Its total cost is evaluated at EUR 9.5 million. Its only stockholder is OJSC “Gazprom”. In December of 2019 the construction has been suspended because of US sanctions. The pipeline is 96% ready.