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Prime Minister Kretschmer considers the opening of Nord Stream 2 to be “a poisoned offer”

Despite the gas crisis, Saxon Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) does not believe in opening the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

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Prime Minister Kretschmer considers the opening of Nord Stream 2 to be “a poisoned offer”

Despite the gas crisis, Saxon Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) does not believe in opening the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Russian President Vladimir Putin's offer to use it to transport gas to Germany is "a poisoned offer," said Kretschmer the “Tagesspiegel” from Sunday. Nord Stream 1 is working and the reduction in gas volume is a reaction to the sanctions imposed.

In a report published on Friday by the editorial network Germany (RND), FDP Vice Wolfgang Kubicki spoke out in favor of opening the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline in order to fill the gas storage tanks for the winter. The initiative was also rejected in his own party.

However, Saxony's head of government warned of the massive consequences of the high energy prices: "These energy prices are destroying everything that is the basis for our healthy economy and social peace." Using biomass and nuclear power. At the same time, Kretschmer spoke out in favor of using the controversial fracking method in Germany to extract natural gas. "Domestic fracking gas would be a way to reduce dependence on Russia and also on the world market," said the CDU politician.

A few weeks ago, Kretschmer himself came under criticism for statements about dealing with Russia and the economic consequences of the Ukraine war - including within his own party. He demanded that Germany mediate in the war between Russia and Ukraine and ensure that "this war is frozen". Russian raw materials are still needed.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy has warned of increased Russian attacks around Ukraine's Independence Day on Wednesday. "Russia could do something particularly disgusting and violent in the coming week," Zelenskyy said in his daily video address. As a precaution, all public gatherings are prohibited in the capital Kyiv from Monday to Thursday. A curfew was even imposed in the second largest city of Kharkiv.

On August 24, Ukraine commemorates its independence from the Soviet Union 31 years ago. This year, on the national holiday, she also looks back on the six months since the start of the Russian war of aggression on February 24. Zelenskyi said Russia has done "something disgusting and violent every week" since then. On the Ukrainian Independence Day, however, “something particularly repulsive and violent is to be expected”.

After the death of the daughter of Russian ideologue Alexander Dugin in a car explosion near Moscow, Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podoliak has rejected Kiev's involvement. "Of course, Ukraine has nothing to do with yesterday's explosion because we are not a criminal state - like the Russian Federation - and certainly not a terrorist state," said Podoliak, according to the Ukrajinska Pravda Internet portal, during a television appearance. Previously, Russian politicians had blamed Ukraine for the killing of the 29-year-old.

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, Russia has said it has used Kinzhal (“Dagger”) hypersonic missiles in the country three times. In all cases, the properties of the projectiles proved to be "brilliant," Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on state television. High value targets were hit on all three occasions. The Kinzhal missiles are part of a new hypersonic arsenal unveiled by President Vladimir Putin in 2018.

The daughter of the influential right-wing nationalist ideologue Alexander Dugin was killed in a car explosion near Moscow. The Moscow Region Investigative Committee of Russia said the nighttime explosion was caused by a bomb attached to the car used by Darya Dugina.

Defense politicians from the Greens, SPD and FDP have called for additional arms deliveries to Ukraine from the federal government, even if this could temporarily weaken the Bundeswehr. In a guest article for the "Spiegel", the members of the Bundestag Kristian Klinck (SPD), Sara Nanni (Greens) and Alexander Müller (FDP) criticized the fact that the ability of the Bundeswehr to defend the country and the alliance has been given priority over helping Ukraine.

For Volodymyr Zelenskyj, the victory of his compatriot and heavyweight world champion Alexander Usyk also has a highly symbolic effect. “Difficult, but so important and necessary victory! Defending the world title is a symbol that all those who belong to the Cossacks will not give up their title, but will fight for it and will definitely win!” tweeted Zelenskyy, congratulating Usyk on his victory against the British ex- Champion Anthony Joshua.

A woman and a man from Russia and a Ukrainian have been arrested at a military factory in southern Albania on suspicion of espionage. This was announced by the country's Ministry of Defense. The 24-year-old Russian was arrested after he went to the site of the factory in Gramsh, some 80 kilometers south of the capital Tirana, and took pictures there, the ministry said.

Two soldiers serving as guards were injured when the man allegedly resisted arrest with a stimulant spray. The 33-year-old woman and the 25-year-old Ukrainian were arrested outside the compound and their vehicle was blocked, the ministry said.

The federal government considers the sanctions imposed because of the Ukraine war to be effective and expects an economic slump of up to 15 percent in Russia this year. This emerges from a response from the Federal Ministry of Economics to the Left MP Sören Pellmann, which is available to the German Press Agency. Pellmann doubts the assessment.

The ministry's response said: "The sanctions hit the Russian economy hard and will continue to have an impact. Reliable calculations predict a recession in Russia, which means a reduction in Russian gross domestic product in a range of 6 to 15 percent for the year 2022.” The Council of the EU assumes a decline in Russian gross domestic product by “more than eleven percent”.

On the Ukrainian national holiday on August 24, the country's second-largest city, Kharkiv, is to have a full-day curfew. "Stay at home and heed the warnings," wrote the governor of the Synehub region on the Messenger service Telegram. The city in the north-east of the country normally only has a night-time curfew. Kharkiv is regularly shelled by Russia.

The Ukrainian government expects increased Russian attacks ahead of the August 24 celebrations of Ukraine's Independence Day. "We must all be aware that this week Russia could try to do something particularly ugly, something particularly evil," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his evening video address. Ukrainians should not allow Moscow to spread despondency and fear around the 31st anniversary of independence from Soviet rule. August 24th also marks the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine 6 months ago.

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