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foreign affairs

Putin says Russia will drop Europe-bound South Stream pipeline

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow will abandon its gas pipeline to Europe and instead build an alternative pipeline to Turkey.

The European Union opposed the $20 billion South Stream pipeline, which would have allowed Russia to ship gas to southeastern Europe while bypassing Ukraine, The Wall Street Journal reports. The pipeline would have carried more than 10 percent of Europe's annual consumption of gas, but Bulgaria put on the brakes after the EU said it needed to investigate if rules were broken regarding pipeline ownership.

During a news conference, Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said their countries had reached a preliminary agreement to start working on a pipeline to Turkey that would terminate at the Greek border. Turkey imports about 60 percent of its natural gas from Russia.