The Kremlin is preparing an energy attack on Europe, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Saturday, each day after Russian energy giant Gazprom indefinitely suspended gas supplies to Germany through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline.
Where Russia cannot take action by force of conventional weapons, it can so by force of energy weapons, Zelenskyy said in a video address. Russia is finding your way through a decisive energy attack on all Europeans, he said.
His comments came after Gazprom, the state-controlled company with a monopoly on Russian gas exports through the main element pipeline, said Friday that it could no more provide a timeframe for restarting deliveries through Nord Stream 1.
It said an oil leak meant a pipeline turbine cannot run safely and that it might not safely resume operations until all malfunctions have been resolved.
Siemens, the German manufacturer of the turbines, however, said in a statement that such leakages usually do not usually affect the operation of a turbine and may be sealed on site, adding that it had never suspended operations previously.Regardless of the leak, there have been additional turbines to use the pipeline, the statement said.
The pipeline, which runs beneath the Baltic Sea to Germany, has historically supplied in regards to a third of the gas exported from Russia to Europe, nonetheless it had been running of them costing only 20% of capacity before flows were halted the other day for maintenance.
Lower gas flows have previously pushed up European prices by nearly 400% in the last year, sending electricity costs soaring and resulting in accusations that Russia is weaponizing energy supplies. Moscow blames Western sanctions and technical issues for supply disruptions.
Zelenskyy said Russia was attempting to attack with poverty and political chaos where it cannot yet attack with missiles.
The announcement concerning the pipeline came after finance ministers from the Band of Seven countries Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and america decided to impose a cap on the price tag on Russian oil, that they said would reduce Moscows capability to fund its war.
Elsewhere in Ukraine, Russian shelling hit the southernport city of Mykolaiv at night time, damaging a treatment facility, the citys mayor said in a statement on his Telegram channel.
Oleksandr Senkevych didn’t specify whether there have been any injuries in the overnight attack, which he said also damaged some residences.
Rafael Grossi, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency said Saturday that the plant had lost external power. Ukrainian staff operating the plant told the IAEA inspectors that the fourth and last operational line was down. Another three were lost earlier in the war.
Only 1 out of six nuclear reactors at the website was functioning, the IAEA said in a statement Saturday.
The only real reactor was producing electricity for cooling and powering households, with a reserve line supplying electricity to the facility.
Russian forces captured the plant soon after they moved into Ukraine, and both sides have exchanged accusations about shelling the plant.
Zelenskyy blamed Russian shelling for an Aug. 25 shutdown that severed the Zaphorizhzhia plant from the national grid, narrowly avoiding a radiation leak and prompting blackouts across Ukraine.
Russias Defense Ministry said Ukrainian troops launched another try to seize the plant late Friday, regardless of the IAEA tour.
NBC News is not in a position to verify the claims from either side.
The IAEA, whose experts have already been stationed at the plant since Thursday, said a secure off-site power along with backup systems were needed for nuclear safety, adding that their presence at the plant was a casino game changer.
Grossi is defined to brief the U.N. Security Council in a few days following a inspection of the plant.