German Economy Minister 'fiercely opposes' Nord Stream 2 launching
According to Habeck, the launch is equal to raising the white flag.
Robert Habeck, the Vice-Chancellor and Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate Action, has fiercely opposed launching the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, stressing that its probable activation is "not an option." The pipeline's launch, according to Habeck, will not be impactful.
"The commissioning of Nord Stream 2 is obviously not an option. We cannot further increase dependence on Russian gas. Russia would achieve its goal of violating the sanctions. It would be raising the white flag in Germany and Europe. We should not do this," Habeck stressed.
Habeck, furthermore, cautioned against interpreting the restart of Russian gas supply through the Nord Stream gas pipeline as a sign of security.
He referred to the issue of the Siemens turbine, which is essential for the Nord Stream gas pipeline, describing it as a far-fetched argument and an "unconvincing game" of Russia.
The Nord Stream 2 pipeline is one of the ways Russian gas supplies can be provided to Europe, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 19.
Turbine for Nord Stream 1 scheduled to return to Germany then Russia
On Wednesday, the president of the EU Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said Canada is preparing to send back a Russian turbine for the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline to Germany on Sunday.
The turbine was shut for repairs and remained stranded for days due to Russian-related sanctions, but it is expected to be delivered on time to Germany first, then delivered to Russia on July 24.
Von der Leyen told a news conference on Wednesday that "the turbine [...] is already in transit back. So there is no pretext not to deliver gas, by the way, there are potentially also alternative turbines that fit, it is not one and single turbine in the world, but there [are] identical turbines. It is in transit, it will be there on time."
If the Nord Stream turbine isn't returned to Russia, Russia will not be able to send its usual 60 million cubic meters a day of gas, rather cutting it down to 30 million cubic meters.
Nord Stream has only employed 40% of its maximum capacity since mid-June.
After many requests from Germany, Ottawa decided to return the repaired turbine.
According to the European Commission, Canada's return of the Nord Stream turbine does not violate EU sanctions on Russia because there is no relation between the sanctions and gas equipment.
The Nord Stream gas pipeline resumed its works on July 21 at 7:00 Moscow time after maintenance was finished.