Russia says US sanctions on Nord Stream 2 violate intl. law

TEHRAN, Dec. 18 (MNA) – Russia has slammed US sanctions on Nord Stream 2 as “a perfect example of unfair competition", saying that Washington is imposing more expensive gas on Europe.

"Moscow and Europe dislike US sanctions on Nord Stream 2, as these measures violate international law," Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday.

"We assume that this project will be completed", Peskov told reporters, when asked whether the construction of the pipeline could be halted due to the sanctions.

The statement comes after the US Senate voted 86-8 in favor of the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which will now be forwarded to US President Donald Trump's desk to be signed into law. The bill includes sanctions against Nord Stream 2, Turkey, and Syria along with a range of other measures.

The operator of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, Nord Stream 2 AG, announced earlier it planned to complete the pipeline in a few months but did not intend to speculate on the completion date.

Some US officials have told Bloomberg that sanctions passed by Congress as part of the defense bill are "too late to have any effect". The US alternatively will try to impose sanctions on other Russian energy projects, according to Bloomberg citing one of the officials.

The Nord Stream 2 is a joint venture between Gazprom and five European companies: France's ENGIE, Austria's OMV, the UK-Dutch conglomerate Royal Dutch Shell, and Germany's Uniper and Wintershall. The 745-mile-long twin pipeline will carry up to 55 billion cubic meters (1.942 trillion cubic feet) of gas per year from Russia to Germany, passing through the territorial waters or exclusive economic zones of Denmark, Finland, Germany, Russia, and Sweden.

The United States has been consistently trying to undermine the project, threatening everyone involved with sanctions, while promoting its liquefied natural gas on the European market. Ukraine is also actively opposing Nord Stream 2, fearing to lose revenue from Russian gas transit. Russia has repeatedly stated that the project was absolutely commercial and competitive and that it did not imply the cancellation of the transit of Russian gas via Ukraine to the EU.

MNA/SPUTNIK

News Code 153497

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