Russia cuts back on gas supply AGAIN to Europe on Wednesday, as the “gas war” between Moscow and the European Union further escalates. This will cause an especially challenging for the EU as the winter heating season is fastly approaching.

Russian gas company, Gazprom, has drastically reduced the capacity of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to Germany earlier this week, claiming the disruption was caused by a maintenance issue. However, Germany said upon investigation that it saw no technical reason for the latest reduction of just 20 percent or capacity, which led the EU to conclude that the Kremlin was sabotaging the supply in exchange for the West’s economic blow following the “special military operations” in Ukraine.

Nord Stream 1 is a major gas link between Russia and Europe, accounting for approximately a third of gas exports between the nations.

Russia’s “gas blackmail” against Europe

Moscow responded to the “energy blackmail” accusations of the EU, stating that Europeans have brought this suffering upon themselves due to the economic sanctions they imposed on Russia.

Gazprom initially reduced the gas exports through the route by 60 percent last month, citing an alleged technical issue because it is yet to receive its Siemens turbine that was “sent to Canada for overhaul and couldn’t return due to imposed sanctions,” according to AP News.

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Map of Nord Stream pipelines connecting Germany to Russia. (Image source: Gazprom/BBC)

In response, Canada has approved the turbine delivery for the said compressor station at the pipeline’s Russian end to Germany. However, when European politicians demanded an explanation from Germany, the latter’s government said that the turbine in question was not meant to be used until September. Nonetheless, the export resumed last week but with a reduced capacity due to continuing repairs.

The latest cutback was another “gas blackmail” against Europe, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said during his nightly address Wednesday, adding that how this will only get worse every month as this is a needed tactic “by a terrorist state to make the life of every European worse,” which includes poverty, hunger, or freezing winter.