Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskyy said Russia was cutting gas exports to “even further increase the energy pressure on Europe” amid the war.
“Russia wants to destroy the normal life of every European — in every country on our continent. He wants to weaken and intimidate all of Europe, every state,” Zelenskyy said on Saturday in a address to his country.
“Where Russia cannot do it by force of conventional arms, it does it by force of energy weapons. He is trying to attack with poverty and political chaos where he cannot yet attack with missiles,” he added.
“And to protect ourselves against that, we all in Europe need even more unity, even more coordination, even more mutual aid.”
The European Union said on Saturday it respected existing energy contracts but was ready to take up the challenge if it did not.
The move came hours after G7 nations agreed to impose a price cap on Russian oil in a bid to stem the flow of funds to Moscow.
“We are not afraid of Putin’s decisions. We ask them to respect their contracts but if they don’t, we are ready to react”, declared the European Commissioner for the Economy, Paolo Gentiloni.
Zelenskyy said Russia was preparing for a “decisive energy attack against all Europeans.
“And the key responses to that should be two things: first, our unity – unity in protecting against the terrorist state, and second – increasing our own pressure on Russia – this includes increasing sanctions. at all levels and the limitation of Russia’s oil and gas revenues,” he said.
“The more strikes we make together, the less these terrorists will be able to do.”