Russia Using Kosovo as Leverage for South Stream?

Here is an interesting tidbit from an energy article: The former Bulgarian Prime Minister Ivan Kostov is arguing that the Moscow is pushing to stalemate the EU on Kosovo not out of concern over separatist precedent, but because they benefit from constructive instability in Southeastern Europe in terms of their energy strategy.

Russia’s efforts to expand its presence in the region have stirred controversy. Former Bulgarian Prime Minister Ivan Kostov, for instance, said in an interview for the Focus news agency that “Russia is interested in keeping the Balkans unsafe. That’s how it applies its strategies there.” “Russia is blackmailing everyone with Kosovo, posing threats to fan the frozen fire in places like Abkhazia and Transnistria. It is obvious that our insecurity is nurturing them,” he said. Many experts doubt that South Stream is a viable project, since it would cost at least twice as much as Nabucco and would simply divert some gas exported through Ukraine, instead of providing a new source of gas. “It is a political pipeline designed to counter Nabucco,” says Alan Riley from London’s City University.

And here we thought Kosovo was just a quid pro quo for Gazprom to swoop up NIS at a great discount.