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Nord Stream leaks should be examined by experts: Polish foreign ministry spokesman

28.09.2022 12:30
The spokesman for Poland’s foreign ministry has called for experts to investigate mysterious leaks in the Nord Stream gas pipelines from Russia to Europe.
A gas leak from the Nord Stream 2 pipeline off Bornholm, Denmark, in the Baltic Sea, as seen on Tuesday, September 27, 2022.
A gas leak from the Nord Stream 2 pipeline off Bornholm, Denmark, in the Baltic Sea, as seen on Tuesday, September 27, 2022.PAP/EPA/Danish Defence Command

Łukasz Jasina made the appeal in a media interview on Wednesday.

He told public broadcaster Polish Radio that the authorities in Warsaw “remain in contact with our Danish allies in this very important matter.”

The leaks

On Tuesday, Danish and Swedish authorities reported leaks in the Russia-to-Germany Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 gas pipelines, close to the Danish island of Bornholm on the Baltic Sea.

The Swedish National Seismic Network (SNSN) said it had detected two "strong underwater explosions" on Monday, in the area where the Nord Stream leaks had been discovered, according to news outlets.

‘Nord Stream leaks should be examined by independent experts’

Poland’s Jasina said: “We expect that all these matters will be explained,” and appealed for “as many facts and explanations as possible,” on the leaks, rather than “high-flown rhetoric.”    

He told Polish Radio that the circumstances surrounding the leaks “should be examined and explained by independent experts,” as reported by the broadcaster’s IAR news agency.  

“Such an incident happening in the centre of Europe, in the Baltic Sea, may pose a big threat to us all,” Jasina said. 

Baltic Pipe ‘a step towards Poland’s energy independence’

Referring to Tuesday’s launch of the Baltic Pipe gas link, designed to bring gas to Poland from Norway via Denmark, Jasina said the new pipeline represented “a step towards energy independence for Poland.” 

He added that Poland’s efforts to renounce Russian gas “are fully supported by the United States.” 

Nord Stream leaks ‘a dangerous incident’: presidential official

Meanwhile, Paweł Sałek, an advisor to Polish President Andrzej Duda, told Polish Radio on Wednesday that the leaks were an “extraordinary” and “dangerous” incident, in the context of the war in Ukraine and “Europe’s massive problems with raw materials and energy.”

Sałek told Polish Radio in an interview that "the Nord Stream rupture is unlikely to have been caused by a technical failure” and "evidence so far suggests there was some kind of interference.”

‘Sabotage action’: EU’s von der Leyen

Also on Wednesday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called the Nord Stream leaks “sabotage action.”

She said in a tweet: “Spoke to Danish PM Mette Frederiksen on the sabotage action #Nordstream. Paramount to now investigate the incidents, get full clarity on events & why.”

Von der Leyen added: “Any deliberate disruption of active European energy infrastructure is unacceptable & will lead to the strongest possible response.” 

Her words were echoed by the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, who announced that the bloc would strengthen the protection of its energy facilities following the leaks.

"We will support any investigation aimed at getting full clarity on what happened and why, and will take further steps to increase our resilience in energy security," Borrell said, as cited by the Reuters news agency.

Nord Stream 1 and 2

Both the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines, designed to bring gas from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea, have been at the heart of the energy crisis between the Kremlin and Europe.

Russia stopped deliveries through Nord Stream 1 earlier in September, deepening the crisis as European countries seek alternative supplies ahead of the winter season.

Meanwhile, Germany cancelled the approval procedure for Nord Stream 2 just before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February. The pipeline had been completed and filled with gas, but was awaiting certification. 

Ukraine and Poland have long opposed the two Nord Stream pipelines as a security threat, saying the projects were designed to bypass Ukraine and give Russia huge power over European gas supplies. 

European countries have accused Russia of using energy supplies as a weapon.

Wednesday is day 217 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 


Source: IAR, PAP, Reuters, euronews.com

Click on the audio player above for a report by Radio Poland's Michał Owczarek.