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    Germany in Touch With EC on 'Proportionate Reaction' to US Anti-Russia Sanctions

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    New US Sanctions Law Against Russia, Iran, N Korea Signed: Consequences (90)
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    German Economic Affairs Ministry is in contact with the European Commission on the proportional response to US sanctions against Russia in the event of their extraterritorial application, a ministry spokesman told Sputnik on Thursday.

    BERLIN (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, US President Donald Trump signed into law a new bill imposing additional sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea. Earlier, the bill was overwhelmingly approved by Senate and the House of Representatives.

    The sanctions target Russia's defense, intelligence, mining, shipping and railway industries and restricts dealings with Russian banks and energy companies. The bill also stressed that the United States would continue to oppose the construction of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline. The law also limits the US president's ability to ease any sanctions on Russia by requiring Congressional approval to lift any restrictions.

    "If the United States really introduces extraterritorial sanctions, the European Union will have to consider a proportionate reaction to them. Here we are in contact with the European Commission," he said.

    The bill has been criticized by the European Union, particularly due to the concerns that the new sanctions will impact its economic interests, especially its energy cooperation with Russia. France and Germany have spoken out against the bill as it affects European industries while advancing US commercial interests.

    Earlier, the Russian Foreign Ministry described the new sanctions as "absolutely illegitimate" and responded with its countermeasures, suspending the use of all US Embassy warehouses and its compound in Moscow. Russia also mandated that the US cut the size of its diplomatic staff in Russia by 755 people by September 1.

    In April, Gazprom's subsidiary Nord Stream 2 AG signed a deal with French Engie, UK’s Royal Dutch Shell, Austria’s OMV and Germany's Uniper and Wintershall, which agreed to provide part of long-term financing of the gas pipeline project, estimated at 9.5 billion euros ($10.6 billion).

    The Nord Stream 2 project presumes the construction of two gas pipelines with a combined annual capacity of 55 billion cubic meters of gas. The new pipeline is planned to be laid along the existing Nord Stream pipeline route from the Russian coast through the Baltic Sea, on to a hub in Germany.

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    New US Sanctions Law Against Russia, Iran, N Korea Signed: Consequences (90)

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    anti-Russian sanctions, Nord Stream-2, United States, Russia, Germany
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