Traces of explosives found at Baltic Sea pipelines: Sweden

On this image supplied by Swedish Coast Guard, a leak from Nord Stream 2 is seen on September 28, 2022
| Photograph Credit score: AP

Investigators discovered traces of explosives on the Baltic Sea web site the place two pure fuel pipelines have been damaged in an act of “gross sabotage,” the prosecutor main Sweden’s preliminary investigation mentioned on Friday.

Mats Ljungqvist of the Swedish Prosecution Authority mentioned the investigators fastidiously documented the world the place the Nord Stream 1 and a couple of pipelines ruptured in September, inflicting vital methane leaks. The parallel undersea pipelines run from Russia to Germany.

“Evaluation carried out exhibits traces of explosives on a number of of the overseas objects that have been discovered” on the web site, Mr. Ljungqvist mentioned in an announcement.

The prosecution authority mentioned the preliminary investigation was “very complicated and complete” and additional scrutiny would present whether or not anybody might be charged “with suspicion of crime.”

The leaks, which stopped after a number of days, occurred in worldwide waters however throughout the unique financial zones of Denmark and Sweden. Investigators haven’t given indications of whom they suppose could be accountable however reported earlier that the blasts have been prone to have concerned a number of hundred kilos of explosives.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov mentioned on Friday it was “essential to search out those that are behind the explosion.”

Sweden’s findings of “a sabotage act or a terrorist act — you may name it no matter you want” affirm “the knowledge that the Russian facet has had,” Mr. Peskov mentioned. Moscow wants to attend for a full harm evaluation to resolve whether or not to restore the pipelines, he mentioned.

Nord Stream 1 carried Russian fuel to Germany till Moscow minimize off provides on the finish of August. Nord Stream 2 by no means entered service as Germany suspended its certification course of shortly earlier than Russia invaded Ukraine in February.

The governments of Denmark, Germany and Sweden have avoided speculating over who could also be behind the sabotage, saying solely that there is no enough proof but to determine the perpetrator.

“We now have no info on doable initiators of this act of sabotage,” German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s spokesman, Steffen Hebestreit, mentioned at an everyday authorities information convention in Berlin on Friday.

However some Nordic and different European media shops have pointed a finger of blame on Moscow, internet hosting navy consultants suggesting that Russia has all of the assets to hold out such a exact assault requiring cautious advance planning.

Fatih Birol, head of the Worldwide Vitality Company, mentioned late September it was “very apparent” who was accountable of the pipeline sabotage, suggesting Russia’s involvement.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused the West of blowing up the pipelines and singled out the US as benefiting from assaults on Europe’s power infrastructure.

Earlier this week, Germany marked the completion of port amenities for the primary of 5 deliberate liquefied pure fuel terminals it’s scrambling to get operating because it replaces the Russian pipeline fuel that when accounted for greater than half its provides.

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