Thousands of protesters took to the streets in the northeastern German seaside town of Lubmin on Sunday, urging officials to put into service the halted Nord Stream 2 pipeline project that was designed to transport fuel from Russia to Germany.
Germany had stalled the launch of the ambitious energy project for months before putting it on the back burner in the wake of Russia's military operation in Ukraine, which is now in its eighth month.
The gas pipeline made landfall in the German port city of Lubmin in the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
With the cold winter approaching, the demonstrators demanded Lubmin officials turn the taps on the Nord Steam 2 natural gas link to Russia.
“So that our homeland has a future, finally open Nord Stream 2,” demonstrators chanted at the protest rally, as reported by German media.
In related news, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz signed a new energy deal with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Sunday to compensate for significant cuts in Russian supplies.
Scholz told reporters in the Emirati capital, Abu Dhabi, that the German government was determined to avoid energy dependence on Russia, and to achieve this Berlin had drafted plans for "a whole series of projects here in terms of the production and purchase of diesel and gas."
"The fact that we are dependent on one supplier and also dependent on its decisions will certainly not happen to us again," he said.
In the meantime, Der Spiegel reported that the European country was currently facing dire conditions not seen for decades.
Germans face diminishing prosperity, a shrinking middle class, and growing inequality, according to the report in the magazine.
The country's recent economic crises have been exacerbated by soaring inflation, skyrocketing energy prices, and a slow economy that got worse after Russia began its military operation in Ukraine on February 24.
“The losses in prosperity will be permanent. Germany, according to the forecasts, is in decline,” Berlin-based economist Michael Fratzscher was quoted as saying in the report.
Fratzscher warned that the German economy will slide into recession this winter with a tenfold increase in the exchange electricity price, numerous corporate bankruptcies, and a permanently damaged economy.
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