France accuses Russia of using gas as ‘weapon of war’
French Energy Minister Agnes Pannier-Runacher on Tuesday accused Moscow of using its gas exports as a weapon after a reduction of Russian supplies to France was reported.
“Very clearly Russia is using gas as a weapon of war and we must prepare for the worst case scenario of a complete interruption of supplies,” the minister told France Inter radio.
EU governments are trying to fill up gas storages to avoid shortages during the fast-approaching heating season, and any supply shortfalls from Russia, which is still a large source of gas for the bloc, are met with increased worry.
Earlier on Tuesday, Le Figaro reported that, according to a press release from French energy supplier Engie, Russia’s Gazprom has cut gas supplies because of an unspecified contractual dispute.
Furthermore, the Russian energy major is slated to halt supplies to the EU via the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline due to maintenance from Wednesday to Friday.
French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne on Monday warned domestic companies that they would be the first to face energy rationing in the event of shortages of natural gas or electricity, and called on them to draft energy saving plans by September.
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