Turkey's Prime Minister Erdogan with Russia's Vladimir Putin

06/08/2010 18:57

Russia, Turkey denies Israel fuel due to “economic considerations.”

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin said Tuesday that they don’t plan to export natural gas to Israel via a new pipeline to Turkey.

“There is no such thing on our agenda,” Erdogan said at a news conference with Putin in Istanbul when asked about the gas.

Russia has held talks on shipping fuel to Israel from a pipeline under the Black Sea. OAO Gazprom, Russia’s natural-gas export monopoly, is negotiating supplying the fuel, Gazprom chairman Viktor Zubkov said on March 22.

Israel may not need the extra gas, which could be transported to Syria or Lebanon instead via the planned Blue Stream-2 pipe, Putin said.

“The Blue Stream gas may not go to Israel because of economic considerations,” Putin said. “I don’t think Israel needs the gas because they found a reserve recently.”

Turkey has said it’s considering paring economic and military ties with Israel and has recalled its ambassador to the country after nine Turks were killed on an aid flotilla headed
for Gaza and intercepted by Israeli commandos last week.

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