World Bulletin / News Desk
Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel confirmed Friday that Russia would continue the gas transit through Ukraine after the construction of Nord Stream 2 in a meeting in Sochi.
The Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project aimed at linking Russia and Germany is vastly opposed by Ukraine, Poland and the Baltic States, through which Russia generally exports its natural gas.
"After the launch of Nord Stream 2, it is not planned to suspend the transit of Russian gas through Ukraine. [...] I want to stress that supplies will continue if they prove to be economically justified and appropriate for the participants of economic activity," Putin said, speaking at a news conference on Friday.
"We consider Nord Stream 2 as an economic project but there are other components in it. That is why we have to think over the guarantees for Ukraine," Merkel said.
Commenting on Trump's intentions to impede the project, Putin said that the U.S. president pursued the American economic interests.
"We consider the project beneficial and will fight for it," Putin said.
The U.S. has opposed the project because it fears Europe’s reliance on Russia for gas will increase. It has also put forth security issues as justification.
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