US slaps sanctions on another Nord Stream firm

·1-min read
A road sign directs traffic toward a Nord Stream 2 gas landfall facility in Lubmin, northeastern Germany, in September 2020 (AFP/Odd ANDERSEN)

The United States on Monday slapped sanctions on another company involved in the controversial Russia-Germany Nord Stream 2 pipeline even as it stops short of more drastic steps.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the United States was imposing sanctions on Transadria Ltd., a shipping company linked to Russia, as well as two vessels.

President Joe Biden's administration took the action as part of a required report to Congress on action against the pipeline, which Ukraine and other Eastern European states fear will embolden Moscow and reduce their leverage.

But Biden has waived sanctions on the main company behind Nord Stream, concluding that the pipeline will go ahead anyway and that it is better to work with Germany.

"Even as the administration continues to oppose the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, including via our sanctions, we continue to work with Germany and other allies and partners to reduce the risks posed by the pipeline," Blinken said in a statement.

Germany, in a deal with the Biden administration, agreed to economic support to Ukraine on transitioning to clean energy and said it would insist that Russia keep gas flowing through its neighbor.

The administration's approach has found wide opposition in the US Congress, with one Republican senator citing the issue to hold up State Department nominations.

Ukraine has been battling pro-Russia separatists since 2014 when Moscow seized the Crimea peninsula.

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