Putin says EU should thank Turkey

The TurkStream pipeline has been reliable in supplying Russian gas to the bloc’s members, the president said

Turkey has ensured a reliable supply of Russian natural gas to the EU, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday, adding that its members should be grateful to Ankara.

During a meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Sochi, Putin named the TurkStream pipeline as one of the most important arteries for delivering Russian energy.

“The Turkish Stream, unlike all other routes of our hydrocarbon supplies, works properly, works smoothly, without any failures. […] I think our European partners should be grateful to Turkey for ensuring uninterrupted transit of our gas to the European market,” Putin said.

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TurkStream consists of two parallel lines running under the Black Sea from Russia, joining Turkey’s gas transportation network and sending Russian gas onward to Bulgaria, Serbia and Hungary. The route has been unaffected by the developments around Ukraine and the anti-Russian sanctions imposed by the EU but rejected by Turkey.

The main pipeline between Russia and the EU – Nord Stream 1, which carries gas to Germany – has been operating at 20% capacity recently due to equipment issues caused by sanctions. Meanwhile, additional routes via Ukraine’s gas transportation network have been restricted by Kiev. Deliveries via the Yamal-Europe pipeline continue, although Gazprom stopped using the Polish leg of the pipeline in May due to sanctions.

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