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NATO chief claims Russia seeking to discredit fracking in West

20 June 2014

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen has said that Moscow is mounting a disinformation campaign against European countries developing their shale gas and oil resources to ensure they maintain their reliance on Russian gas. Rasmussen, a former prime minister of Denmark, was speaking at the Chatham House thinktank in London on June 19.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Rasmussen said: “I have met allies who can report that Russia, as part of their sophisticated information and disinformation operations, engaged actively with so-called non-governmental organisations - environmental organisations working against shale gas - to maintain European dependence on imported Russian gas.”

He declined to give details of those operations, saying: “That is my interpretation.”

Fracking, a process that involves blasting dense shale rocks with a high-pressure mixture of water, sand and chemicals to release natural gas trapped within, has been the subject of protests in the UK and other parts of Europe, and is opposed by many environmental groups.
Rasmussen said that fracking should be used to increase Europe’s energy security, by providing a new source of gas and oil supply.

NATO's press office said the remarks were Rasmussen's personal views, not official policy.

Environmental groups attacked Rasmussen’s views, saying that they were not involved in any alleged Russian attempts to discredit the technology, and were instead opposed to it on the grounds of environmental sustainability.

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