Scholz visits Nord Stream 1 turbine ahead of transport to Russia

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz visited a repaired turbine in western Germany on Wednesday, the absence of which Russia says is the reason for its decision to throttle gas flows to Germany through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline.

After repair work in Canada, the turbine is being temporarily stored in Mülheim an der Ruhr before being brought to Russia for installation in the pipeline. Power engineering company Siemens Energy said on Tuesday that the turbine is ready for onward transport.

“The turbine is there, it can be delivered,” Scholz said. “All the technical reasons put forward are not comprehensible on a factual basis,” dpa news agency reported quoting Scholz.

German officials have repeatedly said that Russia’s decision to drastically reduce gas deliveries is an effort to punish Germany for its stance on the war in Ukraine and its participation in sanctions targeting Russia.

“With the delivery of the turbine, we called [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s bluff,” Scholz said in an interview with Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail. “He cannot use this pretext any more and cite technical reasons for declining gas deliveries.”

Scholz came to the defence of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who has been criticized for allowing the turbine to be sent back to Russia despite the fact that the move violates sanctions.

“I consider the criticism of Justin Trudeau and his government as utterly baseless,” he said in the interview. “The decision to deliver the turbine is hardly a favour to Gazprom. It is a strong sign of support for Germany and for Europe.”




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