Ukraine's energy company has agreed with Russia gas giant Gazprom to hold of on settling natural gas debts for imports since October. With Ukraine embroiled in protests, the move signals a tilt by Kiev back to its former Kremlin patrons, Graeber writes.
With energy as its motor and the EU as its guide, Ukraine appears to finally be poised to break with a history of domination from the East, Belinksi writes.
Russia's Nord Stream pipeline bypasses Ukraine, which transports about 80 percent of Russian gas exports to Europe, and could give Moscow greater political leverage in dealing with Kiev.
Bulgaria, Turkey, Greece, and Macedonia reported a complete cutoff of Russian gas Tuesday. Austria and the Czech Republic also saw a sharp drop.
The Russia-Ukraine gas war has left some downstream nations with only a mild shortfall, but has incited debate on how to secure energy reserves amid regional instability.
Ukraine said Tuesday that will avoid a Kremlin cutoff in gas supplies. European gas customers breathed sighs of relief.