Belarus pays Gazprom bill in full

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Russian gas supplier Gazprom has announced that Belarus has paid the outstanding amount on its gas bill in full.

The Kremlin-backed company recently raised supply costs for many of Russia's former satellite states - and Belarus has found it hard to match these rising prices.

The former Soviet republic was having difficulty paying an outstanding bill of $460 million - and Gazprom had announced that it was set to cut supplies by 46 per cent in retaliation. It was thought that this latest energy dispute could lead to supply interruptions in mainland Europe if it was to carry on.

"Gazprom confirms that Beltransgaz has made the last payment for gas delivered in the first half of the year," the company's press department said in a statement. Beltransgaz is the Belarusian pipeline operator.

Alexander Lukashenko, president of Belarus, accused Russia of attempting to take over Belarusian companies and "privatise the whole country" after emptying government reserves to payGazprom.

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