European countries suspect sabotage on two major gas pipelines from Russia after discovering gas leaks at three separate locations in the Baltic Sea Tuesday, according to multiple reports.
Pressure on the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines used to deliver Russian gas to Germany dropped suddenly on Monday, and later on Tuesday the Swedish Maritime Administration detected multiple leaks in Swedish and Danish waters of the Baltic sea, according to The Wall Street Journal. The cause of the leaks remains unclear, but European countries suspect deliberate action against the energy infrastructure, which Russia has been accused of weaponizing against Europe.
“Today we faced an act of sabotage, we don’t know all the details of what happened, but we see clearly that it’s an act of sabotage, related to the next step of escalation of the situation in Ukraine,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said, according to Reuters. (RELATED: Russian Government Blames Western Sanctions For Pipeline Shutdown)
Denmark, Germany and Poland suggested outside forces could have deliberately damaged the politically-fraught pipelines, according to Financial Times, though they didn’t identify any by name.
The Kremlin also called the incident an “an unprecedented situation requiring urgent investigation,” the WSJ reported, as videos of U.S. President Joe Biden’s pre-invasion threats in February to take down the second pipeline circulated social media.
“If Russia invades… again, then there will be longer Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it,” Biden said on Feb. 7 in a joint conference with German Chancellor Olaf Sholz, Reuters reported.
The Biden administration had reluctantly agreed to Germany’s deal with Russian energy giant Gazprom to build the Nord Stream 2 pipeline that would allow the firm to double its export capacity to Europe and bypass transit authorities in Ukraine, according to Reuters. Berlin reversed course earlier in February in light of the imminent invasion, saying the country needed to “reassess” the security of its oil supply.
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitri Peskov said the damage could be attributed to sabotage, but no definitive statement could be made until the investigation concludes, the WSJ reported.
— Forsvaret (@forsvaretdk) September 27, 2022
Attempts to speculate on the cause of the leaks are “premature,” European Commission spokesman Tim McPhie said Tuesday, according to Reuters. The commission would continue to monitor the leaks and work with member states to investigate the issue, he added.
#Nordstream: Laut seismographischen Daten aus Skovbrynet auf der Insel Bornholm gab es am Montag 00:03 und 17:03 UTC zwei Spikes, gefolgt von höherem Rauschen, Erdbeben kann es nicht gewesen sein.
— Moritz Metz (@moritzmetz) September 27, 2022
The leaks should not affect European energy supply, as operator Nord Stream AG and Russia’s Gazprom PJSC had largely deactivated both pipelines from transporting gas to the continent. However, they contained gas under pressure, fueling the leak.
Nord Stream AG did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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