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Russia halts gas supplies to Finland

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Moscow: Russia has halted its gas exports to neighbouring Finland, in the latest escalation of dispute with Western nations. Russian gas giant Gazprom said, it has completely halted gas supplies to the Finnish gas company since the company has not received payments in rubles.

The Finnish state-owned gas company Gasum said, natural gas supplies to Finland under Gasum’s supply contract was cut off by Russia yesterday morning.

In a statement, the Finnish company said during the upcoming summer season, Gasum will supply natural gas to its customers from other sources through the Balticconnector pipeline. Gasum’s gas filling stations in the gas network area will continue in normal operation, it added.

The move comes after Gazprom demanded that European countries pay for Russian gas supplies in rubles because of sanctions imposed over Moscow’s military action in Ukraine. Finland has refused to comply.

This development also comes a few days after Finland and Sweden submitted letters formally expressing interest in joining NATO. The letters were conveyed by the Finnish Ambassador and the Swedish Ambassador to NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg at the Alliance’s Brussels headquarters.

Last Sunday, Russia also cut electricity supplies to Finland. It had threatened retaliation should Finland apply to join NATO.

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