WASHINGTON, June 19. /TASS/. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken held a telephone conversation with Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau on Friday night and discussed among other issues a possible threat posed by the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project to the European energy security, US State Department Spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.
"Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke with Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau," the statement reads. "Secretary Blinken emphasized the strength of our Polish-American partnership to NATO and the Transatlantic community in addressing regional and global challenges."
"The Secretary also discussed our cooperation with Poland to address the threat posed by the Nord Stream 2 pipeline to European energy security," according to the statement.
"The Secretary emphasized the importance of defending our democratic values, including media freedom and respect for civil rights, as Poland looks forward to assuming the chair of the OSCE [Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe] in 2022," the statement added.
Washington openly opposes the Nord Stream 2 construction and is engaged in active efforts to halt the project to primarily deal a blow to Moscow’s interests and provide support to Ukraine as a country that used to transit Russia’s natural gas to Europe. Moreover, many experts point out that the US is seeking to convince Europe to purchase its LNG which is much more expensive than the natural gas delivered via Russian pipelines. In the past few years, the United States adopted a series of legislative acts that pave the way for unilateral sanctions, including on companies involved in this project.
The Nord Stream 2 project envisages the construction of two pipeline strings with a total capacity of 55 bln cubic meters per year from the coast of Russia through the Baltic Sea to Germany. The pipeline’s construction was suspended at the end of 2019 when the Swiss pipe-laying company Allseas stopped work due to Washington’s sanctions.
However, the work resumed in December 2020 after a year-long pause. The new pipeline will double the capacity of the Nord Stream pipeline currently in operation, following largely the same route.