Germany 'firmly rejects' U.S. sanctions on Nord Stream 2 firms

FILE PHOTO: German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz holds a news conference on tax revenues in Berlin, Germany, October 30, 2019. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch/File Photo

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany’s finance minister and vice chancellor, Olaf Scholz, said Berlin “firmly rejects” U.S. legislation imposing sanctions on firms laying the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russia to Europe.

“Such sanctions are a serious interference in the internal affairs of Germany and Europe and their sovereignty. We firmly reject this,” Scholz told German broadcaster ARD in comments released on Saturday. But he rejected countermeasures.

“It is now up to the companies involved in the construction of the pipeline to make the next decisions. It is clear to us that we will not accept the imposition of such a sanction, and we will make this clear to the American government,” he added.

Writing by Paul Carrel; Editing by Kevin Liffey