NGOs protest against Russian LNG at Zeebrugge port

Around 20 Ukrainian and Belgian organisations protested against the transhipment of Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the port of Zeebrugge on Monday. 

Some 30 demonstrators gathered at the Belgian foreign ministry to hand over an open letter to Belgian Foreign minister Hadja Lahbib and prime minister Alexander De Croo. They are calling for a ban on the transhipment of Russian gas in Zeebrugge and all other European ports.

After the massacres in Boetsha and Irpin in March 2022, the European Union set a target of phasing out gas imports from Russia by 2027. Despite this ambition, a record volume of almost 4.3 million cubic metres of Russian LNG passed through Zeebrugge last year. 

"Belgium and Zeebrugge are actually a hub for Russian LNG," said Angelos Koutsis of the Belgian environmental group Bond Beter Leefmilieu. The Belgian port serves as a transhipment point for LNG from Russian gas fields in northern Siberia, allowing LNG to be transferred from icebreakers to conventional tankers. 

LNG transiting through Zeebrugge generated some 730 million euros for the Russian treasury last year, according to the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. 

Ports in France and Spain have also continued to tranship Russian LNG, while the Netherlands and the UK have de facto banned the practice.


#FlandersNewsService | © BELGA PHOTO TIMON RAMBOER

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