Russia threatens Europe with higher energy prices (Source euobserver.com) Russia reacted angrily to the EU economic sanctions, threatening to increase energy prices. “Obsessed with sanctions, Brussels is itself creating barriers for further cooperation in such a key sector as energy industry,” the Russian foreign ministry said in statement. “It is a senseless and irresponsible step, which will inevitably cause European energy market prices to rise,” the statement said. The ministry added that the economies of Russia and the EU are interlinked and that the “stage three” sanctions will affect the economic situation in the EU “not less than in Russia”. Some 30 percent of the overall EU gas consumption is covered by Russian gas imports, but some eastern member states are up to 90 percent dependent on Russia. The possible retaliation in the energy sector was factored in when the EU decided to adopt economic sanctions. As for the arms embargo, Russia said it was “perplexed” since it “does not take part in the military conflict in Ukraine.” Moscow also accused the EU of being influenced too much by the US: “It’s a shame that after having long searched for its own ‘single voice,’ the EU now speaks Washington’s voice.” The US has released intelligence showing that Russia continues to arm the pro-Moscow separatists in Ukraine and said it believed YouTube audiotapes of rebels talking about shooting down a passenger plane were authentic. The Russian foreign ministry however said current EU foreign policy is not based on facts, but defined by Washington who is “watching questionable YouTube videos”.
“Of course, we will take into consideration the current non-constructive and non-independent behaviour of the EU when building our relations,” it concluded.