Russia ready to send gas to EU via Nord Stream 2 — Minister
Russia is able to supply gas to the European Union through a string of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline that that was not damaged by the recent sabotage, Deputy Prime Minister Aleksander Novak has told RIA Novosti.
The former energy minister described the attempts to destroy Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 as deliberate.
“Unfortunately, due to sabotage, one string [of Nord Stream 2] was damaged, and an examination is required to make further decisions on the fate of the string,” Novak explained.
“As for the second string, it is ready, fully built, and if the necessary legal decisions are made by our European colleagues regarding the certification and removal of restrictions, I think Russia could provide appropriate supplies through this string of the gas pipeline in a short time,” he said.
The Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines abruptly lost pressure on September 26, following a series of powerful underwater explosions off the Danish island of Bornholm. The incident caused massive gas leaks, with large volumes entering the sea. The ruptures are widely considered to be the result of sabotage, carried out by an unknown party.
The deputy premier also said that neither the operator of the Nord Stream project, nor Gazprom or industrial regulator Rostekhnadzor, were allowed to investigate the incidents on the pipelines, adding that an objective probe requires the participation of Russian professionals.
Earlier this week, the operators of the two gas pipelines said they were unable to inspect the damaged sections because of restrictions imposed by the Danish and Swedish authorities.
Nord Stream 2 AG, the Switzerland-based operator, said on Tuesday it would examine the condition of the leaking pipelines once a police investigation of the “crime scene” is completed and a cordon is lifted. Later Nord Stream AG, operator of the older Nord Stream 1 pipeline, said it had been told by Danish authorities that receiving the necessary permits to carry out an inspection could take over 20 working days.
Meanwhile, unnamed sources told CNN that Washington is considering offering to use its most advanced underwater sound reading capabilities to analyse audio recordings from around the time of the Nord Stream gas pipelines’ apparent sabotage.
Russia earlier called rupturing of the pipelines a terrorist attack. While those behind it have not yet been identified, Moscow has suggested the US was to blame.
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