SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 8 December 2021, Wednesday |

US slaps sanctions on another Nord Stream 2 firm

The United States sanctioned another company involved in the contentious Russia-Germany Nord Stream 2 pipeline on Monday, but stopped short of taking more drastic measures.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced sanctions against Transadria Ltd., a Russian-linked shipping company, as well as two vessels.

The action was taken as part of President Joe Biden’s administration’s required report to Congress on action against the pipeline, which Ukraine and other Eastern European countries fear will embolden Moscow and reduce their leverage.

However, Biden has waived sanctions against the main company behind Nord Stream, concluding that the pipeline will proceed regardless and that it is preferable to work with Germany.

“Even as the administration continues to oppose the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, including through sanctions, we continue to collaborate with Germany and other allies and partners to mitigate the risks posed by the pipeline,” Blinken said in a statement.

In an agreement with the Biden administration, Germany agreed to provide economic assistance to Ukraine in its transition to clean energy and stated that it would insist that Russia keep gas flowing through its neighbor.

The administration’s approach has been met with widespread criticism in the United States Congress, with one Republican senator citing the issue as a reason for delaying State Department nominations.

Ukraine has been fighting pro-Russian separatists since 2014, when Moscow annexed Crimea.