Monday, January 02, 2006

U.S. State Department Criticizes Russia on Gas Cut-Off

The U.S. State Department has issued the following press release regarding the suspension by Russia of gas shipments to Ukraine:

The United States regrets the Russian decision to cut off gas from Russia to Ukraine, with potential effects on gas supplies elsewhere in Europe. Such an abrupt step creates insecurity in the energy sector in the region and raises serious questions about the use of energy to exert political pressure. As we have told both Russia and Ukraine, we support a move toward market pricing for energy but believe that such a change should be introduced over time rather than suddenly and unilaterally. Russia and Ukraine have a shared interest in maintaining good reputations as gas supplier and transit countries. The US has encouraged a compromise solution, and we remain hopeful that a resolution will be reached between the two sides that provides energy security and predictability for all concerned.


Update: Germany has warned Russia that the decision to cut off gas supplies to Ukraine may harm Russia's relations with the West.
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