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Berlin's decision on Nord Stream 2 will not change

According to Germany Foreign Minister Heiko Mass, Berlin will not change its position on Nord Stream 2 and would like to restore the EU-Russia strategic relationship.

Policy towards Russia and Ukraine will be one of the priorities for Germany during the EU Council presidency. This was stated by Germany Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, presenting on Monday, July 13, at a meeting of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, the priorities of Berlin during the presidency of the European Union, DW correspondent reports.

Referring to the issue of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which Gazprom is trying to complete under the Baltic Sea to Germany, Mas noted that this is an economic policy issue for Berlin. “We will not change our decision on this project now. We believe that this is a matter of diversifying our sources of energy supplies, “ the Minister said.

EU-Russia strategic relations

Speaking about the policy towards Russia as a whole, Heiko Mas recalled that the EU maintains a “minimal consensus” on this issue, which consists of the regular extension of sanctions. “I think we need more... Therefore, we want to prepare for the time when we can again talk more intensively about strategic relations with Russia. I think we should prepare for this. That is why we will deal with this topic within the framework of our presidency of the EU Council,” Mas said. At the same time, he stressed that “in order to change and restore the EU's strategic relations with Russia, a solution is needed in Ukraine.”

The head of the German Foreign Ministry said that negotiations in the “Normandy format” on the implementation of the Minsk agreements and the agreements of the summit in Paris are moving slowly. “The negotiations are not easy, progress is limited, but the decision in the East of Ukraine will be a prerequisite for the EU to talk about the topic of Russia at all,” Mas stressed. In particular, he recalled that the ceasefire is still being violated and that the agreements of the Normandy four summit in Paris on the withdrawal of forces have not been fulfilled.

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