The US Senate’s latest raft of Russia sanctions has met fierce opposition from two of the United States’ traditionally closest allies. In a joint statement, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel and Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern condemned the threats as “illegal” and decried the measures as an attempt to advance US economic interests.
“Europe’s energy supply is a matter for Europe, not the United States of America,” they said in the statement on Thursday. “We cannot accept . . . the threat of illegal extraterritorial sanctions against European companies that participate in the development of European energy supply.”
US Senators on Wednesday supported an amendment which strengthens existing sanctions against Moscow. But the measure would also introduce new restrictions aimed at companies that provide “goods, services, technology, information, or support” to Russian “energy export pipelines,” which the two politicians regard as a direct attack on European energy sovereignty.