Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has ordered the Energy Ministry and Gazprom to prepare gas supplies to southeastern Ukraine as humanitarian aid.
"I would like the Energy Ministry and Gazprom to prepare proposals on the provision of humanitarian aid in the form of gas supply to these regions if no actions to supply gas using the usual scheme are taken," Medvedev told the Russian government.
"People should not freeze," Medvedev said.
The prime minister's press officer Natalya Timakova said: "Gazprom will supply gas to the southeast as humanitarian aid on a commercial basis. The sources of financing are being determined."
At the same time, a source familiar with the situation assumed that a loan will be provided or some other funding option will be selected.
The Lugansk information center reported on Feb.19, that Kiev has cut off gas supplies to DPR and LPR. "This was done in a barbaric manner - the valves were removed from the trunk pipeline in such a way that makes their further reconnection virtually impossible. The republics will run out of their gas stockpiles in the evening," it said.
"After Ukraine shut off the valve on the trunk gas pipeline, which ships gas to the territory of the LPR and the DPR, employees of our department interfered and managed to restore gas supplies. However, Ukraine shut off other valves and the trunk gas pipeline near the village of Artem at 1:00 p.m. on February 18," it said.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said on Wednesday that Kiev had suspended payments for electricity generated in the army operation area.
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