Sweden’s navy had been patrolling Nord Stream detonation sites days before explosions

Vessels were not there when incident occurred

Swedish naval vessels were monitoring the Nord Stream pipelines prior to the explosions. AFP
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Sweden’s naval patrols had suspected a possible attack could take place and had been monitoring the Nord Stream pipeline days before the explosions.

Four leaks were discovered last week on the Nord Stream pipelines connecting Russia to Germany.

The leaks led to huge volumes of greenhouse gases being spewed into the Baltic Sea, acts widely viewed as state-sponsored sabotage by Russia.

On Wednesday, it was revealed that the Swedish navy had been patrolling the areas days before, but were not there on the day of the explosions.

The armed forces confirmed to Swedish newspaper Samnytt that the navy had patrolled the area of ​​the suspected sabotage on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines days before the leak was discovered.

But it refused to say why the ships were in the area, citing strict secrecy.

"Our operations at sea are subject to extra secrecy due to various events and the global situation. So we don't tell very much about what we do," the navy's spokesperson Jimmie Adamsson said.

The ships departed from Karlskrona on Thursday and travelled to the area where powerful underwater explosions were detected the following Monday, according to data from the commercial service Marine Traffic, which monitors ship traffic at sea.

The Kremlin denies it was behind the attacks.

Several hundred kilograms of explosives are said to have been used in the assaults, causing significant damage to the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 offshore pipelines.

Last Friday, the UN Security Council held a meeting on the issue.

Russian deputy foreign minister Sergei Vershinin told the assembly "the general opinion was that this was sabotage and that it should be investigated" but that "no decision had been made" on an international probe.

Sweden has now blocked off the area around the Nord Stream pipeline leaks in the Baltic Sea while the suspected sabotage is investigated, prosecutors said on Monday.

Updated: March 08, 2023, 4:26 AM