President Joe Biden said that he expressed his concern in a conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel about the Russian “Nord stream-2” gas pipeline. Biden said this at a joint press conference held at the White House after his talks with Merkel.
“We will jointly protect our NATO allies on the eastern flank from Russian aggression,” Biden said, “While I have confirmed my concern about “Nord stream-2,” Chancellor Merkel and I are absolutely united in our belief that Russia should not be allowed to use energy resources as a weapon to coerce or threaten its neighbors.”
Russia is rushing to complete the construction of a pipeline through which Russian gas will flow to Germany, while Ukraine will lose the payment that the country currently receives for gas transit from Russia.
In response, Angela Merkel said that although Germany and the United States have different points of view on “Nord stream-2,” Berlin, according to her, still considers Ukraine as a country through which Russian gas is transited.
“Nord stream-2″ is an additional project that is not a project to replace transit (gas) through Ukraine. Any other option, obviously, can create more tension,” Merkel stressed.
The Chancellor added that Europe can use “a number of tools,” including sanctions, if Russia does not adhere to a conscientious course towards Ukraine.
Moscow says that the $ 11 billion pipeline, which is being built by the Russian state-owned energy company Gazprom and its Western partners, will be put into operation at the end of this year.
Biden said today that he and Chancellor Merkel, respectively, have already asked their teams to think about measures that the United States and Germany can take together if Russia’s actions begin to weaken Europe’s energy security.
The two countries agreed to cooperate to accelerate actions to overcome the climate crisis in developing countries, promising to strengthen investments in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe.
The joint statement on the results of the negotiations separately refers to investments aimed at supporting energy reforms, improving energy efficiency and energy security of Ukraine. This decision, according to the Reuters news agency, may affect the US-German agreement on the “Nord stream-2,” the signing of which is expected before August.
After today’s talks at the White House, President Biden and Chancellor Merkel signed the Washington Declaration, thus confirming their “commitment to close bilateral cooperation in order to promote peace, security and prosperity throughout the world.”
According to the declaration signed, the United States and Germany pledged to support the rule of law, civil society, independent media and good governance around the world.
The leaders of both countries stressed that Germany and the United States will protect the open world, continue to work “in the name of a free and peaceful Europe” and will do everything possible to ensure that new technologies are directed to support freedom, and not to suppress it. In addition, the declaration states that both countries “are aware of their responsibility for leadership in developing solutions to global problems.”
As a solid demonstration of bilateral relations, Biden and Merkel decided to establish a US-German Forum on the Future, which will fully use scientific innovations to shape the future of the whole world. In addition, the United States and Germany announced the establishment of the US-German Economic Dialogue “to facilitate cooperation on important economic issues.”