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US foreign policy

US appoints Amos Hochstein to energy security post, to monitor Russia pipeline

Blinken, the top US diplomat, said this appointment showed that the Biden administration was determined to push back against Russia’s use of energy as a geopolitical weapon.

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Secretary of State Antony Blinken appointed Tuesday a new diplomat tasked with focusing on measures to “reduce the risks posed” by Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was allowed to proceed under the Biden administration.

“I am appointing Amos Hochstein to serve as the Department’s Senior Advisor for Energy Security, underscoring the Administration’s commitment to promote energy security for the United States and our allies and partners,” Blinken said in a statement. “His immediate focus will be the implementation of measures to reduce the risks posed by the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, as outlined in the July 21 Joint Statement of the United States and Germany on Support for Ukraine, European Energy Security, and our Climate Goals.”

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The Biden administration claimed that the pipeline was nearly complete by the time they took office. The Trump administration had sanctions in place against various entities to prevent the completion of the underwater pipeline from Russia to Germany.

Hochstein has played similar roles in the energy sector in previous administrations. Blinken said Hochstein was “uniquely suited” to support the development and implantation of an integrated US strategy to strengthen global energy security.

Blinken, the top US diplomat, said his latest appointment showed that the Biden administration was determined to push back against Russia’s use of energy as a geopolitical weapon.

He also said Hochstein’s appointment was proof of Washington’s efforts to advance a more secure and sustainable energy future for Ukraine and frontline NATO and EU countries.

Ukraine quickly hit out at the Biden administration after sanctions waivers were granted for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline to be completed.

Read more: Germany ready to sanction Russia if energy is used as weapon, says Merkel