US pipeline sanctions won't go unanswered: Russia

US pipeline sanctions won't go unanswered: Russia

US pipeline sanctions wont go unanswered: Russia

Russia will respond in kind to U.S. sanctions against the TurkStream and NordStream II projects, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Dec. 23.

Speaking at the upper chamber of the Russian parliament in Moscow, the Council of Federation, Lavrov said preparing a fitting response needs both time and analysis.

“I assure you that such absolutely unacceptable, rough actions in violation of all norms of international law, all diplomatic and human decency will not remain without reaction,” Lavrov said, taking lawmakers’ questions.

A defense budget passed by the U.S. Congress last week included sanctions on companies involved in the Nord Stream 2 as well as the TurkStream project, claiming the projects would make Europe dependent on Russia for energy.

The Nord Stream project - operational since 2011 with an annual capacity of 55 billion cubic meters - brings Russian gas directly to Germany via the Baltic Sea.

The Nord Stream 2, spearheaded by Russia’s state-owned energy company Gazprom, is nearly completed and has the same annual capacity, running almost parallel to the first pipeline route.

Together they will meet the annual gas demands of a quarter of the European continent.

The TurkStream natural gas pipeline has a total capacity of 31.5 billion cubic meters, out of which the first line will carry a capacity of 15.75 billion cubic meters of Russian gas to Turkish consumers. The second line will carry another 15.75 billion cubic meters of gas to Europe via Turkey.

Bridge to Crimea

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin opened a controversial new bridge on Monday crossing a strait from mainland Russia to Russian-occupied Crimea.

Putin’s trip across the bridge launched rail traffic on the bridge, with the first passenger train from Saint Petersburg to Sevastopol - Crimea’s largest city - set to cross tomorrow.

Ukraine, the European Union, and the U.S. have all condemned the 19-kilometer bridge connecting Russia to a peninsula they say is under illegal occupation.

The bridge, the longest bridge in Europe and Russia, crosses the Kerch Strait into the Sea of Azov, and includes a motorway section opened last year.