Russia uses gas supply as 'weapon of war' says France

STORY: France has accused Moscow of using energy supplies as a "weapon of war".

Tuesday's allegation comes as Russia's Gazprom reduced deliveries to one of France's main utilities.

The gas giant is also preparing to stop flows along Nord Stream 1 to Germany from Wednesday (August 31) to Friday for maintenance.

The major pipeline, the main conduit for Russian gas into Europe, has become a flash point in the economic war between Moscow and Brussels.

The Kremlin said Tuesday that technological problems caused by Western sanctions were the only thing standing in the way of supplying gas through Nord Stream 1.

But France's Energy Transition Minister said Tuesday that "very clearly Russia was using gas as a weapon of war".

The minister was speaking after French utility ENGIE said it would receive less gas from Gazprom from Tuesday due to an unspecified contractural dispute.

European governments are trying to find a response to soaring energy costs for businesses and households.

They are also want to find alternatives to Russian supply to store for winter.

Western nations fear that Moscow is driving up gas prices to try and weaken their resolve in opposing its invasion of Ukraine.

Moscow denies doing this.

European energy ministers will hold an emergency meeting on September 9 to discuss the crisis.

A source in Italy said Germany is open to discussing a price-cap scheme on gas supplies at a European level.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi has been pushing for a price cap, and called for steps to decouple the cost of electricity from the gas price.