Sweden discovers a fresh leak in the Nord Stream gas pipeline

The fourth leak this week has been found, this time in Sweden, in a significant undersea pipeline supplying Russian natural gas to the EU.

Sweden discovers a fresh leak in the Nord Stream gas pipeline
Sweden discovers a fresh leak in the Nord Stream gas pipeline

This week, gas leaks in the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines were discovered in Sweden and Denmark, raising the likelihood of an intentional attack.

The EU attributed the damage to sabotage but avoided specifically blaming Russia.

Suggestions that Russia had attacked its own pipelines were brushed aside as “expected and dumb.”

Instead, the explosions took place in “zones controlled by American intelligence,” according to the foreign minister of the Kremlin.

Miguel Berger, the German ambassador to the UK, told the BBC that it was obvious that a non-state actor could not have been responsible for the incidents.

The head of Finland’s security intelligence service, Antti Pelttari, refused to speculate on which state was responsible for the attacks on the pipelines but said they were a perfect example from the playbook of a state actor.

According to him, given that Russian diplomats and agents had been expelled from the West following its invasion of Ukraine, it was “very likely” that Russia would “move to the cyber environment over the winter.”

The fourth breach on Nord Stream 2 was discovered, according to the Swedish coast guard, quite near to a previous, larger leak on Nord Stream 1.

In retribution for the West’s support for Ukraine, the EU has accused Russia of using gas supplies as a weapon against it on numerous occasions.

Without going into any detail, Fatih Birol, the head of the International Energy Agency, stated that it is “quite evident” who is responsible for the damage.

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The leaks, said to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, have him “very concerned,” and he added that it was impossible to rule out a planned strike.

The energy infrastructure of the continent would be subject to the “strongest possible response,” according to EU leaders.

While this was going on, Norway, a non-EU country, declared it would send troops to guard oil and gas facilities.

Despite the fact that they both contain gas, Nord Stream 1 and 2 are not currently delivering any gas.

Since Russia shut down the Nord Stream 1 pipeline in late August, claiming that it required repair, no gas has been carried via the two parallel sections of the network.

From the Russian coast at St. Petersburg to northeastern Germany, it extends 1,200 km (745 miles) beneath the Baltic Sea. After Russia invaded Ukraine in February, construction on its twin pipeline, Nord Stream 2, was halted.

Before the leaks appeared, underwater bursts were noted by seismologists. The Baltic Sea is covered in bubbles, the largest of which is one kilometre in diameter, according to video of the leaks given by Denmark’s Defense Command.

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There was “no doubt” that these were explosions, according to Bjorn Lund of Sweden’s National Seismology Center.

A Russian attack, though, wouldn’t make sense, according to Andrei Kortunov of the Russian International Affairs Council, a think tank with offices in Moscow.

He said on BBC Radio 4, “They usually put the blame at Russia, but I think given it’s Russian property it would not be very reasonable for Russia to inflict damage upon it.”

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“There are other methods to make life more difficult for Europeans. Without causing any harm to the infrastructure, they can simply halt the gas supply.”

Sweden discovers a fresh leak in the Nord Stream gas pipeline
Sweden discovers a fresh leak in the Nord Stream gas pipeline

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