Foreign Minister: No legal way to stop Russian pipeline

Sweden’s government does not support the building of the German-Russian Nord Stream 2 pipeline, but has no legal way to stop it, was the message from Foreign Minister Margot Wallström in Thursday’s parliamentary debate.

Christian Democrat politician Mikael Oscarsson says Sweden can act to stop Nord Stream 2 based on international law, because of the Russian occupation of Ukraine’s Crimea. But Social Democrat Wallström said this claim is without substance, calling it “waffle.”

She says the security and environmental case against Nord Stream 2 is being pursued within the EU, together with Baltic countries and in relation to the EU Commission.

Next week the other parties in Sweden’s parliament will meet with the governing Social Democrats and Greens to go through the situation with Nord Stream 2.

The pipeline will pass through Sweden’s economic zone in the Baltic Sea, and use the harbour of Slite in the island of Gotland. The local politicians of that region have expressed support for the opportunities offered by the project. And on Thursday the CEO of Karlshamn harbour, on the southern coast of Sweden, confirmed to Swedish Television news that the Russian gas consortium wants to use Karlshamn while building Nord Stream 2.

“We have been in contact with them for a long time. It will be very important for us”, says Mats Olsson to the broadcaster.