The Moscow Times / Russia’s energy monopoly Gazprom has welcomed Germany’s approval of a multibillion-dollar gas pipeline to Europe that is viewed with suspicion by Moscow’s geopolitical rivals.

The Nord Stream 2 project announced Wednesday that it received a construction and operation permit from a northern German regional mining authority for a 55-km section of the gas 1,200-km pipeline off the Baltic Sea coast.

Read More Read more: Gazprom Lobbyists Spent $1 Mln Shielding European Pipeline From Sanctions “This key decision opens the possibility of starting construction of the new Nord Stream-2 offshore gas pipeline’s most important section in German territorial waters,” Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller was cited as saying by Interfax on Wednesday.

The Stralsund Mining Authority issued the permit less than a week after top diplomats from the United States and Poland expressed strong opposition to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

“We see it as undermining Europe’s overall energy security and stability and providing Russia yet another tool to politicize energy as a political tool,” U.S. State Secretary Rex Tillerson said at the time.


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