Skip to comments.EU urges Putin to honour oil contracts ( Russia )
Posted on 10/21/2006 11:09:26 PM PDT by george76
European leaders on Friday night pressed Vladimir Putin, Russias president, to honour contracts with western oil companies, amid fears in the EU over Moscows tightening grip on the energy sector.
In a strained summit dinner in the Finnish town of Lahti, EU leaders also chided Mr Putin on questions of human rights, press freedom and Moscows tough treatment of the former Soviet republic of Georgia.
The meeting with Mr Putin served as a reminder to European leaders that their attempt to build a more equal energy partnership with Russia has so far yielded few positive results.
Instead of encouraging European investment in Russia, Moscow has questioned contracts signed in the 1990s by companies including Royal Dutch Shell and Total.
This month it also shut foreign capital out of the development of the huge Shtokman gas field.
In spite of the differences among EU member states in their relations with Moscow, some leaders bit their tongues at last nights dinner.
They jointly argued that Mr Putin should treat western companies fairly if he wants Russian companies to have greater access to European markets.
The timing of Mr Putins appearance as the guest of honour at the EU summit was viewed as awkward by many European diplomats.
Russias dealings with western oil companies, its tough treatment of Georgians living within Russian borders and the assassination of the journalist Anna Politkovskaya have all caused increasing concern in Europe.
On Friday Mr Barroso was forced to justify why the EU was honouring a leader who was overheard on Thursday joking that he envied the Israeli president, who is facing rape allegations.
The Russian Kommersant daily newspaper quoted Mr Putin, a former KGB agent, as saying:
He turns out to be a really powerful guy! He raped 10 women!
(Excerpt) Read more at ft.com ...
Tony Blair, Britains prime minister, called for a two-way street in investment...
keep in mind that former German chancellor
Gerhart Schroeder works for Putin.
not sure about how many others, but it looks like
they can't sellout, fast enuf
Putin is positioning the gas lines for an economic war against Europe.
Who will be first ?
keep in mind that stupid EUians are converting electricity
from coal to natural gas,
costing everyone 5 cents more per kilowatt-hour
sending billion$ to the Soviets
Poles might not be that stupid
Being independent from Putin's Russia would be very smart.
Hopefully the Poles and others will not depend so heavily on gas lines running thru Russia's control.
I think that the Poles are smart and they see this coming.
I heard Blair's speach about this. He seemed to me to be clearly rattled. But politics is a strange arena - you never know what other ingredients are in the mix. This is all about positioning I guess. We will have to wait and see.