Kremlin says new gas pipeline to Germany will help stability

MOSCOW (AP) — The Kremlin says a new prospective natural gas pipeline to Germany will help increase regional stability and strengthen ties between Russia and the West.

U.S. President Donald Trump argued Wednesday that the new natural gas pipeline venture with Moscow has left German Chancellor Angela Merkel's government "totally controlled" and "captive to Russia."

Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, countered Thursday, saying "natural gas pipelines lead not to a dependence of one country from another, but to mutual interdependence."

He added the U.S. criticism of the planned Nord Stream 2 pipeline was rooted in Washington's desire to encourage European Union nations to buy more expensive liquefied gas from the U.S.

Asked if the issue could cloud Monday's Putin-Trump summit in Helsinki, Peskov said its agenda would include many conflicting issues.