The administration of US President Donald Trump plans to expand sanctions against Russia’s Nord Stream 2 project, Bloomberg reported, citing a draft of the legislation it claims to have obtained. According to the outlet, a bipartisan group of US Senators intend to introduce a bill that would take aim at insurance companies working with Russian pipe-laying vessels on the project.
GOP Senator Ted Cruz, one of the authors of the proposed legislation, said Moscow’s project poses "a critical threat to America’s national security and must not be completed", Bloomberg reported, adding that Cruz alleged that Russian President Vladimir Putin was trying to bypass a previous round of sanctions that Washington imposed on Russia.
Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen claimed that the venture "threatens Ukraine, Europe’s energy independence and gives Russia an opening to exploit" US allies. "Congress must once again take the decisive action and stand in this pipeline’s path", Bloomberg quoted Shaheen as saying.
Last year Russia said that US sanctions would not derail the project. Moscow has repeatedly said that it views Washington’s sanctions as a manifestation of unfair competition and noted that the actions are in violation of international law.
The Nord Stream 2 is pipeline is aimed at delivering Russian gas to Germany under the Baltic Sea through territorial waters of five European countries, Denmark, Finland, Germany and Sweden. The United States has long called on European countries to buy its liquefied natural gas products instead, and has opposed the pipeline, saying that by completing it the Kremlin would increase political leverage over Europe. Key members of the project, including Berlin, Europe’s economic powerhouse, insist that the pipeline is purely economic in nature.