Merz and Röttgen v Merkel, Groenen v SPD

While the Greens have long rejected the gas pipeline to Russia, new gaps are emerging within the Union. The FDP agrees. The SPD and links are heavily involved in the project.

In Germany, the debate about the consequences of the poisoning of Russian opposition Alexei Navalny continues. Numerous politicians, especially from the Greens, the FDP and the Union, are calling for the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany to be halted – including the candidates for the presidency of the CDU, Norbert Röttgen and Friedrich Merz. The Greens have long rejected the project, partly for reasons of foreign policy. Chancellor Angela Merkel, Economic Affairs Minister Peter Altmaier and the SPD are sticking to it so far. The left also argues for further construction.

“Fissure for Europe”

At the start of construction in 2019, the boss of the Greens Annalena Baerbock told Chillreport: “The German government is making itself the stirrup holder of the autocratic President Putin, renewable energy sources are being thwarted and a rift is opening for Europe.” The Baltic states in particular, but also Ukraine, Poland, Denmark, Sweden and Slovakia have serious reservations about the project. They fear the growing Russian influence in Europe and see their security at risk. France had initially blocked the project, But then Germany tried to compromise.

Politicians, especially foreign and European politicians from the Union, the FDP and the Greens from various factions, have long criticized the project. CDU foreign politician Norbert Röttgen has now called on Germany and France to stop acting alone in Russian policy. He told the “Rheinische Post”: “A common European strategy towards Russia can only exist if Germany and France alone give up.” France can no longer rely on a bilateral strategic partnership with Russia.

Schröder is the main lobbyist for the pipeline

“The pivot for a common European strategy is not to complete Nord Stream 2,” demanded Röttgen. Germany’s approval for this Russian project was against the vast majority of European partners from the outset. In Germany, however, the former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder was the main lobbyist. He is Nord Stream Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Nord Stream 2”.

After Nawalny was poisoned, CDU economic expert Friedrich Merz has now also called for a two-year construction freeze. “So far, I am in favor of the pipeline construction, despite some concerns,” Merz told the newspaper “Bild”. “But after the poison attack on Navalny, Europe must respond now. I propose an immediate two-year freeze on construction, ie a moratorium.” Russian President Vladimir “Unfortunately Putin only understands this language”.

The FDP faction also called for a moratorium until the events surrounding the attack on Navalny were clarified and the Kremlin was visibly involved. Previously, FDP Vice President Wolfgang Kubicki had opposed such a demand from his party. However, as far as policy towards Russia is concerned, he is largely isolated within the FDP.

According to energy economist Marc Oliver Bettzüge, Nord Stream 2 is “not of existential importance to the security and profitability of the gas supply in Germany or Europe” from an energy point of view. Model calculations indicate that Nord Stream 2 could significantly reduce gas prices in the EU. A gas supply gap would not be endangered without the pipeline, said the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung professor of economics, energy and sustainability at the University of Cologne.

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