Russia's Gazprom threatens to freeze Europe to death in two-minute video ad

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In a video released on social media, alongside the caption “Winter will be big – only dusk and snow”, various shots of European areas drenched in thick clouds and snow can be seen in a horrifying prediction of what is to come. While the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, which carries roughly 59.2 billion cubic metres of gas per year to Europe, remains shut, fears are spreading that already high energy bills could rise even further. It comes as Gazprom, a state-owned Russian company, blamed the closing of the pipeline on Germany’s Siemens Energy for not repairing faulty equipment relating to an oil leak, with EU politicians dismissing this as a pretext. 

Gazprom’s deputy chief executive Vitaly Markelov said on Tuesday that Russia’s biggest natural gas pipeline to Europe will not resume pumping until Siemens Energy repairs faulty equipment. 

Europe is facing its worst gas supply crisis ever, with energy prices soaring and German importers even discussing possible rationing in the European Union’s biggest economy after Russia reduced flows westwards.

Gazprom on Friday said the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, Europe’s major supply route, would remain shut as a turbine at a compressor station had an engine oil leak, sending wholesale gas prices soaring.

When asked when Nord Stream 1 would start pumping gas again, Mr Markelov, from the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in the Russian Pacific port of Vladivostok, said: “You should ask Siemens. They have to repair equipment first.”

Siemens Energy, headquartered in Munich, Germany, said on Tuesday that it did not comprehend Gazprom’s presentation of the situation.

It said an engine oil leak at the last remaining turbine in operation at the Portovaya compressor station did not constitute a reason to keep the pipeline closed.

“We cannot comprehend this new representation based on the information provided to us over the weekend,” Siemens Energy said in a written statement.

“Therefore, until further notice, our assessment is that the finding communicated to us does not represent a technical reason for stopping operation. Such leaks do not normally affect the operation of a turbine and can be sealed on site,” it added.

READ MORE: EU major bust up as bloc agrees with measures to tackle prices [REPORT] 

The Kremlin blames the energy crisis on sanctions imposed on Russia by the West over what President Vladimir Putin calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine. European leaders say Moscow is using energy to blackmail the EU.

Nord Stream 1, which runs under the Baltic Sea to Germany, is by far the biggest Russian gas pipeline to Europe, carrying up to 59.2 billion cubic metres of gas per year.

Once considered a symbol of the cooperation between one of the world’s biggest energy powers and the world’s fourth largest economy, Nord Stream has now become the subject of recriminations between Berlin and Moscow.

European politicians say Putin, Russia’s paramount leader since the last day of 1999, is using his clout as the head of one of the world’s biggest energy powers to stoke discord in Europe over the conflict in Ukraine.

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More turmoil for energy markets as Russia SHUTS OFF gas to Europe [REVEAL] 



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