Zelensky Calls Nord Stream 2 'Weapon' Against Ukraine and Europe
© Sputnik / Dmitry LelchukPipe-laying vessel Fortuna leaves the port of Wismar to work on Nord Stream 2 construction
© Sputnik / Dmitry Lelchuk/
KIEV (Sputnik) - Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky described the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline connecting Russia and Western Europe a weapon that Moscow could use against his country.
"The biggest challenge to Ukraine at the moment in this [energy] sphere is the completion and launch of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Its operational launch is not related to economics. It is a weapon against Ukraine and, I am certain, will be a weapon against all of Europe in the future", he said.
Zelensky, who spoke at a Ukrainian political forum on Monday, called on Western allies to torpedo the project, which aims to carry 55 billion cubic meters of gas a year across the Baltic Sea, bypassing Ukraine. Russia has repeatedly denied using gas contracts as a tool, while Poland, Ukraine, and the Baltic states urged Europe to stop the cooperation with Moscow and backed the US-imposed sanctions against the project
© AP Photo / Ronald ZakPresident of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky addresses the media at a joint press conference with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz after their meeting at the federal chancellery in Vienna, Austria, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky addresses the media at a joint press conference with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz after their meeting at the federal chancellery in Vienna, Austria, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020.
© AP Photo / Ronald Zak
Ukraine's economy relies on Russian gas transit money: according to the chief of Ukraine's GTS Operator, Sergiy Makogon, the country's economy would lose $5-6 billion yearly if the Nord Stream 2 was launched- including $1.5 billion that Kiev would lose if Russia suspended gas transit.