Ukraine Insists it Had Nothing to Do with Blowing Up Nord Stream Gas Pipelines
The Ukrainian government has insisted they had nothing to do with an attack that blew up part of the Russo-German Nord Stream gas pipelines.
Officials from within the Ukrainian government have insisted that their country is innocent of any wrongdoing after a New York Times report linked the country to the sabotage of the Nord Stream gas pipelines between Russia and Germany.
The Nord Stream 1 pipeline had been an essential lifeline for Germany’s energy situation until it was critically damaged in the attack last year. So far formal investigations have determined it was the subject of sabotage, yet they have yet to link the incident to an actual culprit.
However, this week, a New York Times report claimed that the paper was provided with details from anonymous U.S. security sources tying the incident to a “pro-Ukrainian group”, with further reporting from German media describing the attack as being perpetrated by a ship allegedly owned by two Ukrainian businessmen.
According to a report by Die Zeit, this boat was then rented out by individuals of unknown national origin, with it sailing out of a Polish port for the operation, which is now said to have involved a team of six people planting explosives on the underwater pipeline.
With those involved allegedly using fake passports throughout the operation, it remains unknown what nationality those involved in the attack were, though American sources reportedly believe they were either Russian, Ukrainian, or a combination of both nationalities.
Ukraine has now strenuously denied any links to the attack, with presidential advisor Mykhailo Podolyak comparing the reports to “conspiracy theories”, while the state’s defence minister has also repudiated any suggestion that the country was involved in the event.
Western allies have also been keen to resist the allegations that Ukraine is behind the attack.
Multiple officials within the German government have undercut suggestions that their infrastructure may have been attacked by their own ally, with Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock insisting that people should not “jump to conclusions” over the incident.
Perhaps favouring so-far unsubstantiated claims reported by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh that the America was behind the pipeline sabotage, government officials from Russia have also come out to defend their Ukrainian adversaries, with Moscow reportedly describing the reports linking Ukraine to the attack as a “coordinated fake news media campaign”.
“Obviously, the authors of the attack want to divert attention,” government spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Russian media, adding that it was strange that the U.S. officials behind the New York Times’ could link anyone to the attack when a proper investigation into the incident has yet to be concluded.
“The very least that the Nord Stream shareholder countries and the United Nations must demand is an urgent, transparent investigation with the participation of everyone who can shed light,” the Russian official continued, adding that Russia’s exclusion from investigations into the incident was unacceptable.
“We are still not allowed in the investigation,” he said. “This is not just strange. It smells like a monstrous crime.”