Feature

Russia: If you pay, you get our natural gas

Europeans shouldn&rsquo;t be so quick to swallow Ukraine&rsquo;s lies about Russia disrupting gas supplies, said an editorial in <em>Russiatoday.com.</em>

EditorialRussiatoday.com

Europeans shouldn’t be so quick to swallow Ukraine’s lies, said Russiatoday.com. EU leaders have been coming out with “aggressive political rhetoric” saying that Russia is using its natural gas exports as a “geopolitical weapon” to browbeat other countries into doing its will. This theory simply doesn’t fit the facts. Remember, there are no fewer than 32 European countries that depend on Russia’s gas monopoly, Gazprom, for fuel. Of these, several countries have shaky relations with Russia. Yet Ukraine is the only one that has ever complained of being “pressured” by having gas withheld. During last summer’s conflict between Russia and Georgia, for example, “not a single disruption of gas supplies was registered, not a single complaint heard from Georgia.” That’s because Georgia continued to pay its bills, and Russia continued to supply gas. Two years ago, when Estonia and Russia were at loggerheads over Estonia’s shameful treatment of Soviet graves, there were no accusations of gas disruption. Again, Estonia paid and Russia delivered. Ukraine, alone among Gazprom customers, refused to pay its bills. That is why Russia cut off the gas. It’s just business—“not mixed with politics.”

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