Schwesig is under pressure: the consequences of Nord Stream 2 are politics

Manuela Schwesig, the Prime Minister of Schwerin, is under tremendous pressure from events related to the state’s own climate fund. Photo: dpa / Jens Büttner

Who and how participated in the Schwerin State Climate Fund, which was supposed to ensure the construction of the pipeline? This is what the commission of inquiry wants to find out. what is known so far.

It wasn’t that long ago Manuela Šveig is seen as the SPD’s greatest hope – to become a party leader or even a candidate for chancellor. Just like the one that doesn’t stop, even when the wind blows in her face, so did the prime minister of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in the 2021 election campaign. The result of her dreams came true, the SPD had just missed an absolute majority. Criticism of the then controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was supposed to transport Russian gas to Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, has fallen on the head of government. But now it is Manuela Šveig to experience tremendous pressure.

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The pipeline project collapsed due to the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine. But in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, more is being said: the project raises the explosive question of whether and how Russia has influenced political decisions in Germany. The events must now be investigated by a commission of inquiry. Overview:

What are the charges against Schwesig?

The focus is on the MV Climate Foundation. The main allegation is that the fund was set up in 2021, primarily to circumvent imminent US sanctions on the pipeline, and that the project could be completed – and the fund was largely backed by Russia’s state-owned Gazprom. Gazprom is a co-owner of Nord Stream 2 AG. Documents published since then show that the group was actively pulling the strings when the fund was set up. Critics say the government has concealed close ties with Gazprom. The charitable foundation should therefore serve as a kind of protective shield under which companies can continue to work to complete despite sanctions.

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According to its statutes, the foundation, which was approved by the state parliament at an extraordinary session in early 2021, aims to establish an “economic business area” to “contribute to Nord Stream’s workflow. Pipeline 2 “. But there is also an area for the common good. It aims to promote and implement climate protection measures and projects in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. Critics see this part of the fund as pure camouflage. The current scourge has intensified after the Ask the State platform and the Die Welt newspaper fought for hundreds of pages of documents in court. For example, e-mail In the flow of letters, it becomes clear that Nord Stream 2 was consulted on the wording of the articles of association during the establishment of the fund. The opposition criticizes that the financial resources and shareholding in the business are still unclear. She also accuses the state government of violating the assurance that the fund was not directly involved in the construction of the pipeline. A hint of this is a ship that is said to have been acquired by the foundation. Meanwhile, it was decided to liquidate the fund.

What should a commission of inquiry investigate?

The committee, asked by the opposition from the CDU, the FDP and the Greens, has an extensive program with more than 70 questions. He wants to find out the role of the state government and the fund in completing the pipeline. It should also be clarified on whose initiative the fund was set up. In addition, it is necessary to examine what was really focused on the common good in the company, how individual private companies were supported and who was or is involved in the business. The issue of secondary foreign policy will also play an important role, raising the question of “whether the commitments to the European allies have been sufficiently taken into account,” it said. Witnesses are also being invited, probably including Gazprom lobbyist Gerhard Schröder, Nord Stream 2 AG CEO Matthias Warnig and, of course, Schwesig and former Prime Minister Erwin Sellering (SPD).

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What will happen to Manuela Schwesig?

The prime minister is under a lot of pressure. Video message shortly after …

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