The German government suspects that the sudden loss of pressure in the Nord Stream 2 gas pipelines between Germany and Russia is the result of deliberate sabotage, according to reports.
German newspaper Tagesspiegel newspaper is reporting that officials believe the pipeline was hit by a “targeted attack,” carried out by either Russia or Ukraine.
Pressure in the Nord Stream 2 undersea gas pipeline dropped from 300 to 7 bars on Sunday night.
The potentially devastating pressure loss was followed by a similar occurrence in Nord Stream 1’s pipeline on Monday afternoon.
The sudden drop of pressure in the Nord Stream 2 pipeline may also have caused a gas leak near the Danish island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea.
The situation is currently being investigated by Denmark’s authorities.
An anonymous source told Tagesspiegel that German authorities “can’t imagine a scenario that isn’t a targeted attack.”
The outlet’s source revealed that the government’s assessment has concluded that “everything speaks against a coincidence.”
The attack had to be deliberate because it would have been carried out by special forces, navy divers, or a submarine to be able to reach the bottom of the sea.
The German government believes Russia could have sabotaged its own pipelines as a “false flag” attack to blame it on Ukraine and drive EU energy prices even higher.
Such an outcome would pile even more pressure on European governments amid the continent’s mounting energy crisis.
The attack could also have been carried out by “Ukraine-affiliated forces” to weaken Russia’s critical infrastructure.
“We are in the process of clarifying the situation here,” a government spokeswoman for the federal ministry of economics told the newspaper.
“We don’t currently know what caused the pressure drop.”
Nord Stream 2 was recently completed and was set to “double the volume of gas flowing from Vyborg, Russia, under the Baltic Sea to Germany,” the Guardian reports.
Large protests have taken place in major European cities in recent weeks.
Demonstrators are urging their governments to accept Russian gas to alleviate the cost of living crisis.
“Nord Stream 2 has been literally just sitting there jam-packed with gas ready to be turned on at any moment and deliver billions of dollars worth of dirt cheap Russian gas every year,” writes Chris Menahan.
Thousands of people in Gera in Germany against Olaf Scholz's policy and the explosion of energy and gas prices. They demand an end to sanctions on Russia and the reopening of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Demonstrations also in other German cities but EU media censors them. pic.twitter.com/dmTMLY11jn
— RadioGenova (@RadioGenova) September 26, 2022