Zelensky advises energy-rich nations to call time on Putin’s ‘blackmail’

Volodymyr Zelensky has actually contacted energy producing nations to step up their output in order to avoid Russia from utilizing its oil and gas to “blackmail” European countries. 

His appeal came a day after EU leaders promised to purchase gas collectively and Germany revealed targets to quickly cut its reliance on Russian energy. Berlin swore to all however wean itself off Russian gas by mid-2024 and stated it intended to end up being “virtually independent” of Russian oil by the end of this year. 

Speaking to a conference went to by lots of Gulf authorities in Doha, Qatar, by video link on Saturday, the Ukrainian president contacted “the responsible states, in particular Qatar” as “reliable and reputable suppliers of energy resources that can contribute to stabilise the situation in Europe”.

“They can do much more to restore justice. Europe’s future depends on your efforts,” he stated. “I urge you to increase energy production so that Russia understands that no state can use energy as a weapon and to blackmail the world.”

Qatar, the world’s biggest exporter of melted gas (LNG), has formerly stated it would assist, however warned that it might just divert about 10-15 percent of its volumes to Europe. The Gulf country offers the majority of its LNG to Asian customers who are locked into long-lasting set agreements. 

Saad al-Kaabi, Qatar’s energy minister, informed CNN today that Doha was not going to divert LNG far from Europe “even if there is financial gain for us to divert away, we would not do that”.

“That’s in solidarity with what’s going on in Europe,” Kaabi, who is likewise president of QatarEnergy, stated. 

This week the United States set out strategies to reroute gas to Europe as western allies step up efforts to improve international energy markets and penalize Moscow.

Washington stated on Friday that it would intend to provide a minimum of 15bn cubic metres (bcm) of extra LNG to the EU this year together with other manufacturers.

Washington has actually been pushing Gulf states, especially Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, to increase unrefined production to assist moisten oil costs. But Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, which co-ordinate oil production levels through Opec+, that includes Russia, have actually up until now withstood.

Saudi authorities argue that the increase in oil costs is not brought on by an absence of supply and increasing output would have little effect on costs. They likewise warn that there is a lack of production capability internationally. 

Zelensky stated on Saturday that it was “a matter of time” prior to European nations declined to purchase Russian oil and gas, including that sanctions versus Russia are “aimed at only one thing — to start Russia seeking peace, so that it does not pose a common threat”.

The Ukrainian army stated on Saturday that its forces continued “to repel the enemy’s offensive, inflict fire damage on it and maintain the previously defined defensive lines” while Russia “continues to regroup and build up forces to resume offensive operations” and “attempts to carry out assault operations, makes air raids and tries to inflict fire damage” on Ukrainian forces.

Russia has actually released “almost all” its systems stationed in Crimea, which Moscow annexed in 2014, and in some districts of Kherson, Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk, in order “to suppress resistance from residents” of Kherson, Henichesk, Berdyansk and parts of the besieged city of Mariupol, Ukrainian forces stated. Kharkiv authorities stated the city was shelled overnight.

A UK intelligence upgrade on Saturday stated Russia continued to pound Kharkiv, Chernihiv and Mariupol, including that its forces were “proving reluctant” to participate in big city infantry operations.

“It is likely that Russia will continue to use its heavy firepower on urban areas as it looks to limit its own already considerable losses, at the cost of further civilian casualties,” Britain’s ministry of defence stated. 

On Friday Moscow stated it was refocusing its month-long military offensive on the nation’s eastern Donbas area in an obvious effort to downsize from Vladimir Putin’s rhetoric when the intrusion initially started. But Ukrainian authorities and western authorities responded carefully to the claim of a modification of military method.

In an address on Friday night, Zelensky stated Ukraine’s militaries had actually caused “significant” losses on Russia’s army over the previous week.

Late on Friday, France, Turkey and Greece revealed that they were preparing an “emergency humanitarian operation” to leave civilians from Mariupol.

France’s president Emmanuel Macron informed a press conference after an EU top in Brussels that he was going over the strategy with the mayor of Mariupol and the Ukrainian federal government and wished to talk to Putin in the next number of days. “The quicker the better,” he stated.


News and digital media editor, writer, and communications specialist. Passionate about social justice, equity, and wellness. Covering the news, viewing it differently.

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