NEWSWATCH: “Russia Uses Its Oil Giant, Rosneft, as a Foreign Policy Tool” – New York Times/ Clifford Krauss

File Photo of Rosneft and Russian Flags Next to Rosneft Banner

“Russia is increasingly wielding oil as a geopolitical tool, spreading … influence … and challenging the interests of the United States. … Moscow risks running into trouble … lend[ing] money and mak[ing] deals in turbulent economies and shaky political climates. The strategy faces a crucial test this week in Venezuela, a Russian ally that must come up with a billion dollars to avert defaults on its debts. … * * *  … [T]hrough … state oil giant Rosneft[, Russia] is trying to build influence in places where the United States has stumbled or power is up for grabs. … also driven out of necessity, as American and European sanctions have forced Rosneft to find new partners and investments …. “

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