Nord Stream investigators find traces of explosives on suspect sailing yacht

“In the samples taken from the boat during the investigation, traces of underwater explosives were found,” says a joint letter from the German UN ambassador Antje Leendertse and the ambassadors of Denmark and Sweden to the UN Security Council in New York. The letter, dated Monday, is available from the German Press Agency.

It goes on to say that there is a suspicion that the sailing yacht was used to transport the explosives used in the sabotage of the pipelines. The three country representatives stressed to the most powerful UN body that the investigations are ongoing: “At this point in time it is not possible to reliably clarify the identity of the perpetrators and their motives, particularly with regard to the question of whether the incident was committed by a state or controlled by a state actor.”

Four blasts ripped holes in the Nord Stream pipelines

On September 26, 2022, explosions were initially registered near the Danish island of Bornholm and a little later four leaks were discovered in three of the four pipeline lines. The operator of Nord Stream 1 later spoke of meter-deep craters and widespread debris on the seabed. Nord Stream 1 and 2 each run as an underwater double strand over a distance of around 1200 kilometers from Russia to Germany. Nord Stream 1 has provided a significant portion of the gas imported into Europe since 2011.

In Germany, the investigators reportedly focused on a chartered sailing yacht that the sabotage team was allegedly on. ARD, SWR and “Zeit” reported in March that, according to investigators, a task force set sail from Rostock. Traces should therefore also lead to Ukraine. According to the report, the yacht was allegedly rented by a company based in Poland, apparently owned by two Ukrainians.

There was also talk of stopovers for the yacht in Wiek on Rügen and on the Danish island of Christiansø, north-east of Bornholm. According to later media reports, it was the ship “Andromeda” provided by a landlord on the island of Rügen. It was not clear from the ambassadors’ letter whether the traces of explosives had been discovered during the investigation of the “Andromeda”.

Jean Harris

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