Many German partners insult Germany that Berlin "openly promotes the business of Vladimir Putin" - the project of the Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline, Der Spiegel writes. The thing is that German Chancellor Angela Merkel is afraid of a new conflict with the Russian president, because only two years ago she was categorically against the construction of the gas pipeline and even called it "the devil's project" of Moscow, the newspaper notes.
The project of the Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline splits Europe, Der Spiegel writes. "And now - as in times of crisis in the EU and dramas with refugees - Germany is accused of unceremonious pursuit of their own interests."
As the newspaper notes, many European partners of the German government "especially offend" that Berlin "openly promotes the business of Russian President Vladimir Putin." After the completion of the construction of the new pipeline 70% of Russian gas for the EU will come to Germany - bypassing Poland, Ukraine and the Baltic states.
Nord Stream 2 is a Nord Stream-2 company, a joint venture of the Russian concern Gazprom and German energy companies such as BASF and Uniper. The head of the same board of directors of Nord Stream 2 is Germany's ex-chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, recalls Der Spiegel.
It is striking, however, that the current Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel supports the construction of the "Nord Stream - 2", continues the publication. And this is despite the fact that only two years ago the head of the German government called him "a devil's project," Der Spiegel is perplexed. "But why, given this, is she holding on to him persistently?" - the publication asks the question.
According to the Christian Democratic Union, Merkel "is afraid of a new conflict with the Russian president: not least because of the approaching elections to the Bundestag." In addition, many German residents believe that "the German government has gone too far in the issue of sanctions against Moscow," adds Der Spiegel.
According to the German publication, Merkel does not benefit from abandoning the project and because the Americans have recently increased their pressure on Europe. Recently, the US Senate decided to tighten sanctions against Moscow. "The senators combined their decision with open threats against European firms that conduct gas business with Russia," explains Der Spiegel. "After that, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel and Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern publicly accused the senators of lobbying the interests of the American gas industry under the guise of sanctions. Even if Gabriel's rough tone did not suit Merkel, she had no choice but to side with the Foreign Minister of Germany. "