The publication in the German media of information about the US surveillance of German Chancellor Merkel and German President Steinmeier testifies to the strong dissatisfaction by the Germans with the United States’ interference in energy cooperation, including the completion of Nord Stream 2, said a member of the State Duma Committee on International Elena Panina.
As previously reported by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, the US NSA, with the help of Denmark in 2012-2014, followed a number of European politicians, including specifically the Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel, the Minister of Foreign Affairs (current President of Germany) Frank-Walter Steinmeier and the candidate Peer Steinbrück as Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany from the Social Democratic Party of Germany.
Commenting on this message to RIA Novosti, Elena Panina noted that the topic of US surveillance of German politicians was actively discussed until 2013, when former CIA agent Edward Snowden made the NSA revelations.
“However, then such messages disappeared from the Western media. The reason, apparently, was not the refusal of the US special services from this practice, but the total taboo of this topic in the Western media. It is curious that it was from this moment that the topic began to be actively promoted in the West.” Russian agents “whose searches began to resemble symptoms of paranoia,” Panina said.
In her opinion, the fact that reports of US surveillance of an ally appeared again in the German media “suggests that the German patience is overflowing.”
“They are unhappy with an ally who twists their arms, interferes in the sphere of energy cooperation, in the sphere of sovereign economic decisions, including the completion of Nord Stream 2 … The sensation, therefore, was not so much the exposure of German journalists as the fact that right now the German media have decided to publish them. In Germany they make it clear that they are tired of the annoying “tutelage” from the United States, “the State Duma deputy believes.
US President Joe Biden previously admitted that sanctions against Nord Stream 2 are counterproductive at this stage, since the project is close to completion. On May 20, the United States announced that, in its own national interests, it abandoned the imposition of sanctions against Nord Stream 2 AG, the operator of Nord Stream 2. However, then the United States imposed sanctions against Russian organizations and ships under the Nord Stream 2 project.
Nord Stream 2 envisages the construction of two lines of a gas pipeline with a total capacity of 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year from the Russian coast through the Baltic Sea to Germany. The project is actively opposed by the United States, which is promoting its liquefied natural gas to the EU, as well as Ukraine and a number of European countries. The states imposed sanctions on the gas pipeline in December 2019, as a result of which the Swiss Allseas was forced to stop laying. It continued a year later, in December 2020.
According to the operator of the project Nord Stream 2 AG (a 100% subsidiary of Gazprom), as of March 31, Nord Stream 2 was 95% built, with 121 kilometers of the total length of the gas pipeline to be laid along two lines. According to the German Consul General in Yekaterinburg, Matthias Kruse, 80 kilometers of pipes remained to be laid on May 17. As Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on April 25, Russia is confident that Nord Stream 2 will be completed, work on this continues.