EU rebukes its representative in Austria over ‘blood money’ comment on Russian gas imports

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s executive branch has strongly criticized the bloc’s representative in Austria for accusing the country of paying “blood money” to Russia for gas supplies. It said Friday that he has been ordered back to Brussels for discussions on the matter. EU representative Martin Selmayr said at a discussion event on Wednesday that Austria continues to get 55% of its gas from Russia but no one is out on Vienna’s central Ringstrasse boulevard to protest that. Selmayr said: “That surprises me, because blood money is being sent to Russia every day with the gas bill.” On Thursday, Austria’s Foreign Ministry said that Selmayr had been summoned for a meeting with one of the ministry’s top officials.