Shipment company

Turbine shipment to Germany to defuse Russia’s energy militarization: Trudeau

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is defending Canada’s decision to return six turbines for a pipeline that carries natural gas from Russia to Europe, even as Ukraine’s World Congress seeks to halt the shipment in Federal Court.

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is defending Canada’s decision to return six turbines for a pipeline that carries natural gas from Russia to Europe, even as Ukraine’s World Congress seeks to halt the shipment in Federal Court.

The Liberals’ decision to grant Siemens Canada an exemption to deliver equipment to Germany while sanctions are in place against the Russian regime has earned it a sharp rebuke from the Ukrainian government and criticism at home.

The Ukrainian World Congress says so and the Ukrainian Canadian Congress has urged the federal government to reconsider its decision to return the turbines, which were in Canada for scheduled repairs.

Trudeau said it was a difficult decision, but made in response to Russia’s attempts to militarize energy access in Europe.

‘Remember, these sanctions are not aimed at our allies, but at Putin and his cronies,’ Trudeau told a news conference in Kingston, Ont., where he announced a deal to build a factory. manufacturing of drum parts in the region.

Canada, NATO allies and others have rallied behind Ukraine since Russia invaded in February with sanctions targeting Russian President Vladimir Putin and others close to him.

Today, Germany in particular faces a looming energy crisis, as Russia retaliated against its European allies by reducing access to oil and gas supplies.

Once returned, the turbines would be used by Russian state energy company Gazprom, which operates the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline that runs under the Baltic Sea from northwest Russia to northeast Germany.

The Kremlin-controlled company cut natural gas deliveries via Nord Stream 1 to Germany by 60% last month, citing technical problems with the turbines, which had been sent to Siemens Energy in Montreal for repair.

As European countries try to wean themselves off their reliance on Russian oil, Trudeau said it’s important to keep their citizens on Ukraine’s side.

“That is why we have made this difficult decision to be there for our allies, to ensure that in Europe, not only governments, but their people, remain steadfast and generous in their support for Ukraine,” did he declare.

The Ukrainian government says this sets a “dangerous precedent” at a time when the international community must show resolve in the face of Russian threats and its invasion.

In a statement, the Ukrainian World Congress said it filed a notice of application for judicial review of the decision with the Federal Court on Tuesday.

In the filing, he argues that Gazprom’s request for the turbines is a “dishonest scheme”.

“Russia is seeking to undermine Canadian and global sanctions and is using the turbine issue to blackmail Canada and Europe,” the app reads.

Congress asked the court to suspend shipment of the turbines and find Canada’s decision unreasonable and an illegal use of Governor in Council power.

On Wednesday, Gazprom questioned the possibility of restoring the gas flow without the rapid return of the turbines.

In a statement posted on Twitter, the company said that “under these circumstances, it seems impossible to reach an objective conclusion on future developments regarding the safe operation” of a compressor station at the Russian end of the pipeline.

Russian gas recently accounted for around 35% of Germany’s total supply. The gas is usually also transported to other European countries.

Congress acknowledged the energy threat Germany faces in its court case, but said Canada’s decision lacks transparency and begins a slippery slope to weaken international sanctions against Russia.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on July 13, 2022.

— With files from the Associated Press

The Canadian Press