MOSCOW - The Kremlin said Monday Western sanctions were to blame for a complete shutdown of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline between Russia and Germany.
In a conference call with reporters, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said sanctions were "causing chaos" in terms of maintenance work on the pipeline and rejected claims Russia turned off supplies to Europe as a political move.
Gazprom completely halted gas supplies through the pipeline after it said it detected an oil leak during maintenance work last week.
The Kremlin said sanctions are disrupting the ability of Siemens Energy, which supplies and services equipment for the pipeline, to help repair an engine oil leak at the pipeline's Portovaya compressor station.
"Problems with gas supply arose because of the sanctions imposed on our country by Western states, including Germany and Britain," Mr Peskov said Monday.
"There are no other reasons that lead to problems with supplies," he added.
Mr Peskov said that if sanctions were lifted, the repair work could be completed easily and gas flows could resume. REUTERS