Two Japanese investors in Russia's Sakhalin-2 liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, are negotiating to sell part of their stake in the project to Russia's state-owned Gazprom, Japanese media reported Thursday. The companies have denied the report.

The Daily Yomiuri stated that Mitsui & Co and Mitsubishi Corp have decided to sell two to three percent of their entire stake.

The project has been suspended by Russia since Monday this week over allegations that it has violated Russia’s environmental laws. The majority stakeholder, at 55 percent, is Royal Dutch Shell, which has denied the charges.

In press releases on Thursday, both Japanese investors said they have not started such negotiations with Gazprom nor have they made any decision.

Shell has announced that it is negotiating with Gazprom over interests.

Alexander Losyukov, Russia's ambassador to Tokyo, said on Wednesday during a press conference that Sakhalin-2 may go forward quickly if Gazprom participates in the project.