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Kremlin mum on reports about Germany nationalizing Nord Stream 2 section

The Kremlin has remained mum on a publication by Der Spiegel about Germany potentially nationalizing a section of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday.

"Let's not delve into hypothetical discussions. If there are any specific actions, then first of all, lawyers will be the ones responsible for providing a legal assessment of such actions, if they are indeed being discussed," he specified.

He added, "Without knowing the essence of what is happening, it would be wrong to say anything". According to Peskov, the Kremlin has no official statements on this topic, and that the recent publication cannot be the basis for any responsible statements.

Der Spiegel reported earlier on Friday citing sources, that the German Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection is studying plans to nationalize the German section of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline and connect it to a floating terminal for receiving liquefied natural gas. According to the article, the German government intends to connect the German portion of the pipeline to the LNG terminal. Spiegel recalled that Nord Stream 2 was already connected to the distribution network and that the segment could deliver gas directly to the south of Germany.

Experts, on the other hand, are concerned that disconnecting the pipes will cause environmental difficulties. Furthermore, there is uncertainty regarding property rights. Nord Stream 2 AG is on the verge of bankruptcy and has appointed an interim manager. Above all, the German authorities are concerned about Russian response, particularly the potential nationalization of German enterprises' property in Russia.

The construction of Nord Stream 2 was fully completed on September 10, 2021. The gas pipeline consists of two strings with a total capacity of 55 bln cubic meters per year, which run from the coast of Russia through the Baltic Sea to Germany. CEO of Gazprom Alexey Miller said earlier that both strings of the Nord Stream 2 are operational and gas can be delivered to Germany at any moment.

[Source: Tass, Moscow, 24Jun22]

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