Merkel, Putin discuss Nord Stream 2, Ukraine gas transit — German cabinet

Merkel, Putin discuss Nord Stream 2, Ukraine gas transit — German cabinet

German Chancellor Angela Merkel had a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, the leaders discussed energy-related issues, particularly the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline and gas transit through Ukraine, as well as implementation of the Minsk Agreements aimed at settling the conflict in east Ukraine, spokesperson for the German government Ulrike Demmer told reporters on Wednesday, TASS reports.

"[The leaders] spoke about the implementation of the Minsk Agreements to achieve peaceful settlement of the conflict in east Ukraine. Moreover, energy issues were also a topic of the conversation such as the gas transit through Ukraine and the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline," she noted. Demmer added, "bilateral issues were also discussed."

Earlier on Wednesday, US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland spoke at a hearing in the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations when she announced that Washington and Berlin had reached an agreement on Nord Stream 2. She claims that Germany particularly pledged to seek that the EU impose sanctions against Moscow in case Russia takes aggressive steps against Ukraine. Moreover, the diplomat stressed that Berlin had additionally vowed to support the extension of gas transit between Russia and Ukraine that currently expires in 2024. Nuland clarified that the US seeks to extend it by 10 years.

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