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Trump-Sanctioned Russian Pipeline Nord Stream 2 Complete, Russia Says

Brittany Jordan



Russian state-owned energy company Gazprom said Friday it has completed construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, a contentious project that will allow Russia to bypass Ukraine and transport natural gas directly to Europe.

The head of the company’s management board, Alexey Miller, announced at a briefing that pipeline construction had been “fully completed” as of Friday morning local time. The pipeline is expected to double Russia’s natural gas exporting capacity to 110 billion cubic meters, constituting about half of all Russian gas exports to Europe, Reuters reported.

Gazprom completed financing agreements for the roughly 745-mile long Nord Stream 2 pipeline from Russia to Germany in 2017 but the almost $11 billion project stalled when former President Donald Trump imposed sanctions on companies constructing the pipeline in late 2019.

The Yuri Topchev (R), a Russian offshore supply ship, departs as sections of pipe for the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline lie stacked at Mukran Port on Rügen Island on August 04, 2021 in Sassnitz, Germany (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

President Joe Biden, however, announced in July that the U.S. and Germany would allow completion of the pipeline in return for an assurance that Germany would help protect Ukraine from potential Russian aggression.

Although the Biden administration had threatened to impose new sanctions on both Germany and Russia earlier in March, it ultimately waived sanctions on Nord Stream 2 AG, the corporate entity in charge of building the pipeline, along with its CEO Matthias Warnig and several Russian ships, two months later.

Biden reportedly overruled Secretary of State Antony Blinken and other senior officials in the decision to scrap sanctions against the pipeline. The president argued the pipeline was already almost complete and sanctions would hurt U.S. relations with Germany, according to The Washington Post. (RELATED: Republicans Fight Biden On Nord Stream 2, Threaten To Block Treasury Picks)

The administration did impose sanctions on one Russian vessel and two Russian individuals in late August over their involvement in the pipeline project.

Although construction of the pipeline is complete, Nord Stream 2 won’t start transporting natural gas until the pipeline is cleared by German regulators, according to Reuters.

Brittany Jordan is an award-winning journalist who reports on breaking news in the U.S. and globally for the Federal Inquirer. Prior to her position at the Federal Inquirer, she was a general assignment features reporter for Newsweek, where she wrote about technology, politics, government news and important global events around the world. Her work has also appeared in the Washington Post, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Toronto Star, Frederick News-Post, West Hawaii Today, the Miami Herald, and more. Brittany enjoys food, travel, photography, and hoarding notebooks and journals. Her goal is to do more longform features journalism, narrative writing and documentary work, and to one day write a successful novel and screenplay.

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