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MOSCOW, November 19. /TASS/. The project of delivering Turkmen natural gas to Ukraine falls into the category of economic undertakings that affect Russia’s interests, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Wednesday.
“We proceed from the fact that each country has the right to choose economic partners, given the understanding that this process does not violate the legitimate interests of its neighbors,” the foreign minister said in the lower house of Russia’s parliament.
“The project of the trans-Caspian gas pipeline falls into the category of projects that affect the interests of the countries that do not participate in the talks on its creation,” Lavrov said.
“From the outset, the European Commission acted as the engine of this project,” the foreign minister said, adding Russia had staged several demarches in Brussels in response to this, stressing that the issues of the Caspian Sea development should be solved only by the Caspian Sea littoral states.
“Indeed, the declarations that were adopted do not yet seal that this also relates to pipeline-laying along the seabed but our colleagues, including Azerbaijani and Turkmen friends, have understanding of our arguments both with regard to international law concerning the need to complete the process of agreeing on the Caspian Sea legal status and with regard to environmental issues,” Lavrov said.