The US has warned German stakeholders in the Russian-led Nord Stream 2 pipeline that sanctions could be imposed on them if they continue their involvement in the project.
US President Donald Trump has described Germany as being a “captive” of Russia as a result of its reliance on Moscow’s energy supplies and has urged it to drop the $11 billion pipeline that transports gas directly to Germany.
Because the pipeline runs underneath the Baltic Sea, it would deprive Ukraine of transit fees, making it more vulnerable in the future.
US Ambassador Richard Grenell addressed the issue in a letter sent to several companies, which “reminds that any company operating in the Russian energy export pipeline sector is in danger under CAATSA of U.S. sanctions,” according to the embassy spokesman.
Germany and its European allies, that do not oppose the proposed pipeline, have said Washington is using its Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) to interfere in foreign policies.
The spokesman added the letter “is not meant to be a threat but a clear message of U.S. policy”.
Conflict has arisen between Germany and Russia after Moscow annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, although both have a common interest in Nord Stream 2, which is set to double the capacity of the existing Nord Stream 1 route.