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13

Gazprom Cuts Gas Supplies to Ukraine

Russian gas giant Gazprom said yesterday that it would cut supplies

Russian gas giant Gazprom said yesterday that it would cut gas supplies to Ukraine if a $1.3 billion debt was not settled this month.

The warning from Moscow was delivered just as pro-Western parties claimed a lead in closely fought parliamentary elections in Ukraine.

The country is a key transit point for Gazprom’s exports to Western Europe.

A spokesman for Gazprom said yesterday that the European Commission had been told of the situation and he denied that the action had any relation to the Ukraine elections.

“Gazprom has been delivering gas for nine months with incremental nonpayments,” he said. The company had deferred its threat of cutting off supplies until after the election so that it could not be accused of twisting arms, he added. “We are trying not to push this issue during elections, the spokesman said.