According to reports, a boat or underwater drone may have buried mines close to the pipelines months or even years ago. And these remote-controlled explosives are likely behind the Nord Stream leaks.
According to Sky News, which cited a UK defense source, the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines could have been destroyed by a remotely detonated underwater incendiary device.
According to the report, the Russian natural gas pipelines may have been damaged by mines delivered to the seabed on a long line, or explosives dumped from a boat or installed by an undersea drone, and the device could have been implanted “months or even years ago.”
The explosives were improbable to have been set by a Russian submarine, according to the source, because the Baltic Sea is rather shallow, rendering such a covert operation easy to discern.
However, the source said that Russia “possibly” pulled out “a suspected act of sabotage,” without offering any proof to back up this assertion.
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Another “Western source” cited by the outlet questioned the Kremlin’s anger over the damages, saying that Moscow “doth protest too much.”
Earlier, Russia expressed worry about the rupture of its pipelines, saying it might have serious ramifications for energy supplies to the “entire continent,” and demanded an immediate inquiry. It also branded any claims that it had coordinated a sabotage effort “stupid and absurd.”
On Monday, both Nord Stream pipelines, that link Russia and Germany via the Baltic Sea, lost pressure, with a major gas leak discovered near the island of Bornholm. Danish officials sealed the area to navigation after the event. So far, four leaks have been discovered.
Meanwhile, the German newspaper Tagesspiegel stated on Wednesday that the damage suffered by Nord Stream 1 and 2 may be irreversible. According to official authorities, if the breaches are not repaired promptly, too much salty sea water could enter the pipes and irrevocably corrode them.
According to German media, Berlin is looking into the leaks as a planned attack, carried out either by pro-Ukrainian troops or by Russia itself in a suspected false flag operation to make Kiev appear bad. The incident is predicted to drive up energy costs even further and deepen Europe’s energy crisis.