The United States warned its European allies this summer that Nord Stream pipelines could be attacked


The United States warned several European allies over the summer, including Germany, that the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines could face threats and even be attacked, according to two people familiar with the intelligence and warnings .

The warnings were based on assessments by US intelligence, but they were vague, the people said – it was not clear from the warnings who might be responsible for any pipeline attacks or when they might occur. produce.

The CIA declined to comment.

Der Spiegel was the first to report intelligence warnings.

On Monday, leaks were discovered in the pipelines, prompting investigations by European authorities which determined that powerful underwater explosions had occurred just before the pipelines burst in several places.

US national security adviser Jake Sullivan and NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg both called the incident an act of sabotage, but European officials have yet to publicly identify the culprit.

However, US, European and Ukrainian officials have been warning for months that critical infrastructure — not just in Ukraine but also in the United States and Europe — could be targeted by Russia in its war on Ukraine.

On Wednesday, the Kremlin called insinuations that it was sabotaging the pipeline « predictably stupid and absurd. »

« It’s quite predictable and, predictably, stupid to express such versions, » Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

« It’s a big problem for us because both pipelines are full of gas, and that gas is very expensive, » he added. He said Moscow « still doesn’t understand what happened there… there are a lot of questions. »

None of the pipelines were pumping gas to Europe when the incident occurred. Russia cut off gas flows to Europe via Nord Stream 1 week ago, saying it needed to carry out technical work on the pipeline, but also in retaliation for Western sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine. The Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, meanwhile, was not yet complete before Germany killed the project in response to the Russian invasion.

Still, the Nord Stream 1 pipeline has provided Russia with significant leverage over Europe for years, as CNN has previously reported. European countries have boosted their energy supplies to prepare for winter amid Russia’s weaponization of energy resources, but Western officials remain concerned about potential shortages if the winter is particularly harsh.

However, any hope that Russia could start pumping gas through Nord Stream 1 next year has been largely dashed now that the pipeline has been so badly damaged, the sources told CNN.

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