Lithuania says Belarus cut off 30 percent of Russian natural gas supplies to Lithuania

MOSCOW (AP) - Lithuania's energy company says neighboring Belarus has cut Russian natural gas supplies to the Baltic nation by 30 percent amid an escalating gas conflict with Moscow.

Lithuania, which gets all of its Russian gas supplies via Belarus, on Wednesday became the first European Union customer affected by the Russian gas cutoffs over what Moscow claims is a nearly US$200 million Belarusian debt for earlier supplies.

Belarus' Energy Ministry warned in a letter to the European Commission on Monday that Russian cuts of more than 15 percent could lead to transit shortages.

Lithuania's energy company Lietuvos Dujos said Belarus cut the supplies Wednesday without warning. Lietuvos Dujos says Latvia has assured its Baltic neighbor that it will be able to supply Lithuania with sufficient gas to meet its needs. - AP


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