U.S. seeks to bolster gas for Europe
Tensions continued Tuesday as Russia announced military drills near Ukraine and elsewhere in Russia.
Meanwhile, the Biden administration said it was working with gas and crude oil suppliers in case Russia responds to possible economic sanctions by cutting off fuel shipments to the European Union. Russia provides about a third of the crude oil and gas that the European Union imports.
The Biden administration announced it is working with suppliers from the Middle East, North Africa and Asia to boost gas and crude oil supplies for Europe.
Many European officials believe Russian President Vladimir Putin waited until now for a possible invasion of Ukraine because of Europe’s need for gas during the cold winter..
Various media sources reported Russia is planning military drills in areas near Ukraine and on the Crimean peninsula that Russia seized from Ukraine in 2014.
The Moscow Times, a news outlet that is independent of the Russian government, quoted the Defense Ministry as saying 6,000 troops and 60 warplanes had been deployed during the readiness drills.
Two weeks ago, 3,000 Russian troops and 300 tanks were deployed around Ukraine.