• Mon. Mar 27th, 2023

    EU vows to hit back if energy network attacked


    Sep 28, 2022

    BRUSSELS: The European Union suspects that damage to two underwater natural gas pipelines was sabotage and is warning of retaliation for any attack on the continent’s energy networks, a senior official said on Wednesday.

    “All available information indicates those leaks are the result of a deliberate act,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said in a statement on behalf of the bloc’s 27 members. “Any deliberate disruption of European energy infrastructure is utterly unacceptable and will be met with a robust and united response.”

    European Council President Charles Michel echoed Borrell’s warning, tweeting that the “Nord Stream sabotage acts appear to be an attempt to further destabilize energy supply to the EU.”

    “Those responsible will be held fully accountable and made to pay,” he said.

    This came after seismologists reported on Tuesday that explosions rattled the Baltic Sea before unusual leaks were discovered on two underwater natural gas pipelines running from Russia to Germany.

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    Some European leaders and experts pointed to possible sabotage given the energy standoff with Russia provoked by the war in Ukraine. The three leaks were reported on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, which are filled with natural gas, but aren’t delivering the fuel to Europe.

    The damage means the pipelines are unlikely to be able to carry any gas to Europe this winter, even if the political will to bring them online emerges, according to analysts.

    Borrell said the EU would support any investigation on the damage and “will take further steps to increase our resilience in energy security.”

    Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has said “it is the authorities’ clear assessment that these are deliberate actions, not accidents.”

    But, she added, “there is no information indicating who could be behind it.”

    Frederiksen rejected the suggestion that the incident was an attack on Denmark, saying the leaks occurred in international waters.

    Meanwhile, Norway, now the biggest supplier of gas to Europe, will beef up security around its oil installations.

    “The government has decided to put measures in place to increase security at infrastructure sites, land terminals and platforms on the Norwegian continental shelf,” Norwegian Energy Minister Terje Aasland said in a statement on Tuesday night.



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