The dispute over Nord Stream 2 continues to come to a head. After the US asked Germany to halt construction, Russia continued the work.

In the battle to complete the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline, Russia has accused the US of illegal and aggressive behavior. The Moscow State Department responded with criticism of the US’s demands on the German government to prevent construction of the nearly-completed billion-euro project. The call by the executive US ambassador to Berlin, Robin Quinville, was “political aggression and illegal resistance” against the gas pipeline, ministry spokeswoman Maria Sakharova wrote on Facebook.

Construction of Nord Stream 2 was halted a year ago due to US sanctions. Further US sanctions now threaten. The federal government is supporting the construction of the line.

Russia uses its own ships for construction

For decades, the US tried to prevent Russian lines regardless of valid treaties, Sakharov criticized. She urged Washington to abide by international rules. Diplomat Quinville told Handelsblatt on Saturday: “Now is the time for Germany and the EU to impose a moratorium on the construction of the pipeline.” This would send a clear signal that Europe “will no longer accept Russia’s continued malicious behavior”. The pipeline is not only an economic project, but also the Kremlin’s political tool to bypass Ukraine and divide Europe.

After the withdrawal of Western special ships due to US sanctions, Russia wants to finish the line itself, as Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin had emphasized. Russia uses its own ships for this, which are already at work.

Pipeline is 94 percent complete

Work is underway on a 2.6-kilometer section of pipeline. Nord Stream 2 AG has had a license for this from the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (BSH) for some time. The permit is only valid until the end of the year. The company itself did not comment on the work.

The pipeline, which will cost around 9.5 billion euros, is 94 percent ready. In the future, 55 billion cubic meters of natural gas will be pumped from Russia to Germany annually via the two Nord Stream 2 pipelines, each approximately 1,200 kilometers long. The US is against the project and justifies it by the fact that its European partners are too dependent on Russian gas. Critics, on the other hand, accuse the US of only wanting to sell its liquefied gas better in Europe.

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