Sweden confirms that the Nord Stream gas pipeline was sabotaged: The analyses that have been carried out show explosive remains
Eva Deschamps / November 18, 2022
The explosions that hit the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea in September, built to bring Russian gas to Europe, were sabotage, announced Friday the prosecutor in charge of the preliminary investigation conducted in Sweden.
The analyses that have been carried out show explosive remnants on several of the foreign objects found," said prosecutor Mats Ljungqvist in a statement. "The continuation of the preliminary investigation may show whether someone can be prosecuted for a crime," the prosecutor added.
By the end of September, four huge gas leaks had been detected on pipelines connecting Russia and Germany, all in international waters.
However, two are in the Swedish economic zone and two in the Danish one.
Preliminary underwater inspections had reinforced suspicions of sabotage, as the leaks had been preceded by explosions, according to the investigators.
At the end of October, the Nord Stream consortium, in which Russia's Gazprom is the majority shareholder, sent a civilian ship under the Russian flag to carry out an inspection in the Swedish zone.
In November, Nord Stream also received permission to inspect pipelines in the Danish area, where another investigation is underway.
Since Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, the two pipelines, which link Russia to Germany, have been at the heart of geopolitical tensions, fanned after Moscow's decision to cut off gas supplies to Europe in alleged retaliation for Western sanctions.
Although the two pipelines were out of service at the time of the incident, they contained large quantities of methane gas, which escaped for several weeks, causing impressive boiling.