KYIV (Reuters) – Russia must bear full responsibility for any humanitarian consequences after flows of Russian gas to Europe through a transit point in Ukraine dried up on Wednesday, the head of Ukraine’s gas pipeline operator said.
Ukraine said on Tuesday it would suspend the flow of gas through the Sokhranovka transit point which it said delivers almost a third of the fuel piped from Russia to Europe through Ukraine.
It said the actions of Russian forces who invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24 endangered the stability and safety of the entire Ukrainian gas transportation system and that it would move the flows elsewhere.
“This morning (Russian state gas company) Gazprom on the territory of the Russian Federation stopped transport from the Russian Federation to the ‘Sokhranivka’ entry point,” Sergiy Makogon, Director General of the Gas Transmission System of Ukraine, wrote on Facebook.
He also said cranes has been blocked without authorisation at a pipeline plant in Ukrainian territory that he said was occupied by Russian forces. This, he said, made it impossible to supply consumers in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions, large parts of which are in the hands of Russia-backed separatists.
“The Russian authorities bear full responsible for the humanitarian consequences of such actions,” he wrote.
(Reporting by Natalia Zinets, Editing by Timothy Heritage)