World

At meeting in Rome, Western powers vow to lessen European dependence on Russian energy

From left, EU Joint Research Centre's director general Dominique Ristori, Japan's Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, Germany's Economy and Energy Minister and deputy chancellor Sigmar Gabriel, France's Ecology and Energy Minister Segolene Royal, Italy's Economic Development Minister Federica Guidi, Britain's Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, U.S. Secretary for Energy Ernest Moniz and Canada's Natural Resources Minister Greg Rickford pose for a photo on the occasion of the G7 meeting for Energy in Rome, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)

From left, EU Joint Research Centre's director general Dominique Ristori, Japan's Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, Germany's Economy and Energy Minister and deputy chancellor Sigmar Gabriel, France's Ecology and Energy Minister Segolene Royal, Italy's Economic Development Minister Federica Guidi, Britain's Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, U.S. Secretary for Energy Ernest Moniz and Canada's Natural Resources Minister Greg Rickford pose for a photo on the occasion of the G7 meeting for Energy in Rome, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)  (The Associated Press)

Britain's energy minister says the Group of 7 Western powers is vowing to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin from using "energy as a weapon" in the increasingly violent Ukrainian crisis.

Ed Davey said energy ministers who met in Rome on Tuesday agreed to work out medium- and long-term policies that would reduce the level of dependence on Russia's oil and gas by much of Europe. Some details will be included in an upcoming statement.

Davey acknowledged such a strategy would take months if not years to implement. But he said "we have taken decisions to face up" to Putin and "disarm the Russian energy weapon" by reducing Europe's dependence on Russian energy.

The ministers were doing preparatory work for an upcoming G-7 summit.