U.S. Department of State explains new sanctions against Nord Stream 2 / REUTERS

The U.S. Department of State has explained the imposition of new sanctions against Nord Stream 2, saying the move is aimed at supporting Ukraine.

"Today, the United States is imposing sanctions on the Russia-based entity KVT-RUS and identifying the vessel FORTUNA as blocked property," the U.S. Department of State said in a press statement on January 19, 2021.

It is noted KVT-RUS is being sanctioned pursuant to Section 232 of the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) for knowingly selling, leasing, or providing to the Russian Federation goods, services, technology, information, or support for the construction of Russian energy export pipelines.

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Read alsoUkraine welcomes new U.S. sanctions against Nord Stream 2"The United States will consider further actions in the near term, under CAATSA, and the Protecting European Energy Security Act (PEESA), as amended," the statement says.

"Nord Stream 2, if completed, would give Russia the means to completely bypass Ukraine, depriving Ukraine of vital revenues and opening it up to further Russian aggressive actions, while providing the means to use natural resources as a tool of political pressure and malign influence against western Europe," the report says.

According to the officials, today's announcement demonstrates that the United States is not afraid to hold accountable those who continue to aid and abet this tool of Russian coercion.

What is more, the United States will continue to work with its friends and allies to ensure Europe has a reliable, diversified energy supply network that does not undermine collective security.

At the same time, the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine says Nord Stream 2 is a threat to U.S. and European vital national interests. "We remain committed to Ukraine's energy security, & blocking Russia's attempts to use energy to assert malign influence," the diplomats wrote on Twitter on January 19, 2021.

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