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Huge blasts preceded leaks in Russia gas pipelines in Baltic Sea

In this picture provided by Swedish Coast Guard, the gas leak in the Baltic Sea from Nord Stream photographed from the Coast Guard’s aircraft on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2022. A fourth leak on the Nord Stream pipelines has been reported off southern Sweden. Earlier, three leaks had been reported on the two underwater pipelines running from Russia to Germany. (Swedish Coast Guard via AP)
In this picture provided by Swedish Coast Guard, the gas leak in the Baltic Sea from Nord Stream photographed from the Coast Guard’s aircraft on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2022. A fourth leak on the Nord Stream pipelines has been reported off southern Sweden. Earlier, three leaks had been reported on the two underwater pipelines running from Russia to Germany. (Swedish Coast Guard via AP)

The explosions that rocked natural gas pipelines under the Baltic Sea ahead of huge methane leaks “probably corresponded to an explosive load of several hundred kilos”, Denmark and Sweden have told the United Nations.

Norwegian researchers published a map on Friday projecting a huge plume of methane released by the damaged Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines will travel over large stretches of the Nordic region.

Moscow has requested an emergency meeting at the UN Security Council to discuss the pipelines and called for a thorough international investigation to assess the damage to the pipelines, which carry natural gas from Russia to Europe.

Russia says “it looks like a terror attack, probably conducted on a state level”.

The suspected sabotage this week on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines have produced two methane leaks off Sweden, including a large one above Nord Stream 1 and a smaller one above Nord Stream 2, and two leaks off Denmark.

Russia Ukraine
Russian President Vladimir Putin (Gavriil Grigorov, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo/AP)

Vladimir Putin accused the West of sabotaging the Russian-built gas pipelines.

The Russian president said “Anglo-Saxons” in the West have turned from sanctions to “terror attacks” in an attempt to “destroy the European energy infrastructure”.

He added that “those who profit from it have done it”, without naming a specific country.

European nations have noted that it is Russia, not Europe, that benefits from chaos in the energy markets and spiking prices for energy.

Earlier in the week, US State Department spokesman Ned Price strongly rejected any claims that the US might have sabotaged the pipelines.

“The idea that the United States was in any way involved in the apparent sabotage of these pipelines is preposterous. It is nothing more than a function of Russian disinformation and should be treated as such,” he said.

The US has long been opposed to the pipelines, saying they increase Europe’s energy dependence on Russia and decrease its security.