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Russia’s Gazprom halts gas deliveries to Europe

Russian energy giant Gazprom suspended gas deliveries to Germany on a major pipeline on Wednesday, the latest in a series of supply halts th...


Russian energy giant Gazprom suspended gas deliveries to Germany on a major pipeline on Wednesday, the latest in a series of supply halts that have fuelled an energy crisis in Europe.


Gazprom said supplies via Nord Stream 1 were “completely stopped” for “preventative work” at a compressor unit, shortly after European gas network operator ENTSOG announced that deliveries had ceased.


Gazprom has also said it would suspend gas supplies to France’s main provider Engie from Thursday after it failed to pay for all deliveries made in July.


The latest stop comes as European countries have faced soaring energy prices since Russia invaded Ukraine in late February and subsequently curbed its gas deliveries to the region.


Germany, which is heavily dependent on Russian gas, has accused Moscow of using energy as a “weapon”.


But Gazprom has said the three-day maintenance work was “necessary” and had to be be carried out after “every 1,000 hours of operation”.


Germany’s Federal Network Agency chief Klaus Mueller has called it a “technically incomprehensible” decision, warning that it was likely just a pretext by Moscow to wield energy supplies as a threat.


Experience shows that Moscow “makes a political decision after every so-called maintenance”, he said, adding that “we’ll only know at the beginning of September if Russia does that again”.


AFP

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