Lithuania | “Suwalki Corridor” now open for transport of Russian goods to Kaliningrad
Defence Redefined
Published on 24/07/2022 at 15:00

The Lithuanian government has lifted the ban on rail transport of goods subject to sanctions against Moscow to and from the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, Reuters reported citing RIA Novosti.

The said ban lifting was unexpected for Moscow so as to re-allow the partial reopening of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline at 30% capacity.

Last week, the European Union said Lithuania should allow Russia to transit concrete, timber and alcohol through EU territory into the Russian enclave, as last June Lithuania did not allow Russia to send goods to Kaliningrad by rail that were subject to sanctions, prompting a sharp reaction from Moscow which threatened retaliation.

A spokesman for the Lithuanian Railways said he had informed his customers that they could send goods again. “It is possible that some goods will be transferred today,” Mantas Dubauskas stated on Lithuanian television. A Kaliningrad official estimated that about 60 wagon loads of cement would soon be transported to the Russian enclave.

Also read: Iran – Russia – Turkey | Cooperation to “exterminate terrorists” in Syria

It is noted that the Nord Stream 1 natural gas pipeline was put into operation the day before yesterday after the lifting of specific sanctions by the EU and the USA, making use of 30% of its capacity.

Before the maintenance work, Die Welt reports, the pipeline was delivering more (at 40% of its capacity) which means Moscow wants to prevent Germany from having a “surplus” that it could offer to Poland.

Regarding the lifting of sanctions, we remind you that the US Department of Treasury announced that it will allow transactions with the Russian Federation related to fertilizers, food, seeds, medicines, and medical equipment, lifting all previous bans on purchases as well as sanctions on those who buy, trade or use them.

Of course, especially when it comes to fertilizers, the US decision has caused enormous damage to world agriculture, as it triggered the subsequent general ban on Russian fertilizer exports to “unfriendly countries” resulting in a reduction in production in the first crops of the year, but also in the concern that the production of agricultural products will decrease in other products as well.

Also read: G7 – BRICS | “Five” emerging against “seven” developed countries?

Most importantly, the United States exempted Gazprom’s former German subsidiary, Gazprom Germany GmbH, from sanctions in order to prevent Russia from cutting off the flow of natural gas to the EU’s strongest economy.

With regard to the EU, in the fear of a food crisis in Europe, the European Union modified its sanctions on Moscow, according to a draft document obtained by Reuters. Of course, the question now is whether other sectors of the economy will be included.

Kaliningrad is located between Poland and Lithuania and is cut off from the rest of Russia. According to Russian officials, the ban had affected up to half of the cargo shipments to Kaliningrad, although Lithuanian authorities estimated that only 15% had been affected.

“Russia reserves the right to take measures to protect national interests, if Lithuania does not resume full cargo transit in the Kaliningrad region in the near future,” the Russian Foreign Ministry announced, when the Suwalki corridor was closed.

“We consider the provocative measures of the Lithuanian side, which violate the international legal obligations of Lithuania, and specifically the Joint Declaration of the Russian Federation and the European Union on the transit between the Kaliningrad region and the rest of the territory of the Russian Federation of 2002, as openly hostile,” the statement said.

Also read: Russia to Lithuania | “Our response to Kaliningrad will not be merely diplomatic”




Pin It on Pinterest

Share This