A senior European Union official says he opposes cutting back gas ties with Russia in the next few years but the bloc should work on diversifying supplies.

Russia is a major European gas supplier, and mounting tensions over Ukraine have raised concerns about possible disruption.

In an interview with Germany’s Welt am Sonntag newspaper, EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger conceded there’s a risk of Russia cutting supplies to Ukraine, an important transit country, over unpaid bills.

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