UK says Russia likely used underwater drone to target Nord Stream pipeline: Report
The UK has alleged that Russia is behind the cause of blasts and subsequent leaks in Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines that supply gas to Europe.
The cause behind the blasts in Nord Stream gas pipelines was an alleged sabotage by Russia, citing a British defence source, the Times newspaper reported on September 28. The ‘attack’ on Nord Stream gas pipelines that caused large blasts in the Baltic Sea were “probably premeditated and planned for”, according to the report.
It is to mentin that major leaks in the pipeline were first discovered on September 26. Josep Borrell, the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, claimed that the leaks were caused by deliberate sabotage, most likely by a state actor.
The UK defence source further alleged that Russia likely planted an explosive device onto the gas pipeline weeks before it was detonated. The source stated that any mines could have been lowered to the seabed along the gas pipelines, dropped over the side of a vessel or planted next to the Nord Stream pipelines via an underwater drone “months or even years ago.”
Europe trades blames with Russia
In contrast to the European Union, which had alleged that the sabotage was likely caused by a state actor but did not specify a culprit, Poland and Ukraine have outrightly accused Russia of causing the ruptures in the pipelines that are leaking gas into the sea.
Meanwhile, Russia’s Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accused the President of the United States, Joe Biden of “threatening to end the Nord Stream.” The spokeswoman further demanded Biden to issue a reply as to whether the US had acted on its threat over the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Maria Zakharova also shared that Moscow intends to call a United Nations Security Council meeting over the damage to the infrastructure.
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Gas delivery from Russia to Europe via Nord Stream 1 was cut off by Russia’s state-run gas company, Gazprom on August 31, on the grounds of necessary maintenance work. The gas delivery from the pipeline to Europe had peaked at 59.2 billion cubic meters last year.
Nord Stream 2 project, which was set to be opened this year, was stalled when Russia launched its special military operation against Ukraine.