Speaking at the Warsaw Security Forum, Olha Stefanishyna, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, said Russia was receiving carte blanche for further military aggression.
Olha Stefanishyna stressed that over the past 20 years, Russia has repeatedly used blackmailing over energy against various countries, including Latvia, the Czech Republic, Ukraine, Georgia, and Belarus.
"Nord Stream-2 is Russia's most ambitious political project, as it will no longer require it to" work "with each European country separately. Russia's goal is to cover all of Europe at once with its hybrid influence. And today, the reduction of gas supplies to Europe and the provocation of rising prices for natural gas is another blackmail by Russia to achieve its goal," said the Deputy Prime Minister.
The official also stressed that Russia's energy strategy until 2020 had stipulated that Russia's role in world energy markets would largely determine its geopolitical influence.
"This principle has been successfully implemented and now we can see it in the Nord Stream-2. Statements that energy cannot be used as a weapon must be accompanied by concrete action. We consider the red lines have already been crossed," said Olha Stefanishyna.
The Deputy Prime Minister also noted that Russia's attempts to influence the whole of Europe should get the response of a collective Europe.
According to the official, today it is also critical to ensure that all procedures related to the certification of the gas pipeline and providing conclusions on the compliance of this project with the requirements of the Third Energy Package are followed.
"It is also vital for Ukraine, which has introduced European rules, pursued unbundling of Naftogaz and introduced transparent rules for the energy market. This approach should work for absolutely everyone without exception," said the Deputy Prime Minister.
Apart from that, Olha Stefanishyna stressed the importance for European partners to start work on a new vision for energy sustainability.