Greenpeace blocks unloading of Russian LNG at Swedish port

STOCKHOLM, Sept 8 (Reuters) - Greenpeace said it prevented on Thursday a tanker from unloading Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG) at Finnish state-owned Gasum’s terminal in Nynashamn on Sweden’s east coast.

The environmental campaigning network in a statement called on the Swedish government to immediately stop the import of Russian fossil LNG.

It said a Greenpeace vessel and activists in kayaks outside the loading dock had prevented the LNG tanker Coral Energy from docking, while other activists had climbed into the cranes used to unload the gas.

“The fact Russian fossil gas is still allowed to flow into Sweden, more than six months after (President Vladimir) Putin began his blood-stained invasion of Ukraine, is unacceptable. We know that all fossil fuels from Russia finance the war,” Greenpeace said in the statement.

Europe has responded to the invasion with a push for alternative energy supplies and an array of sanctions, including bans on Russian oil and coal imports, but Russian LNG shipments are not subject to those sanctions.

The tanker approached the Nynashamn terminal early on Thursday but turned around and left again around 0800 GMT, according to Refinitiv Eikon ship tracking data. It has loaded a cargo in the port of Vysotsk in Russia on Sept. 4.

A Gasum spokesperson said the ship was operated by Gasum.

“The ship is still there and waiting to get safely to port. Local police are there to take care of it,” she said.

Gasum sources most of its LNG from other countries than Russia but a small share is procured under a binding long-term contract with Russia’s Gazprom Export, she said.

Reporting by Anna Ringstrom, Nora Buli in Oslo and Essi Lehto in Helsinki Editing by Tomasz Janowski