Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has told lawmakers that Russia will shift to a system of prepayment for gas supplies if Ukraine's debt remains unresolved.
Addressing Russia's State Duma, the lower house of parliament, on April 22, Medvedev said a prepayment system would be a "harsh but fair decision."
He also dismissed talk that supplies of gas from the United States could reduce Europe's reliance on Russian gas imports, calling such a suggestion a "bluff."
Medvedev also said continuing problems facing the global economy will impact Russia, adding that the "diplomatic climate" and domestic structural issues are also likely to have a negative effect.
Medvedev said the government is working to "minimize" the effects of international sanctions being imposed on the country since Russia annexed Crimea last month and pledged that "all social obligations will be fulfilled."
Based on reporting by ITAR-TASS and Interfax