Sweden’s security service has launched an investigation into the suspicious leaks from the Nord Stream pipelines, the agency confirmed in a statement on Wednesday evening.

Initially, an investigation was opened by the Swedish national police force on Tuesday, with the case being reviewed by the Public Prosecutor’s Office.

“The legal qualification is currently gross sabotage, but this could be subject to change,” a representative from the Swedish police said in an email to CNN.

Following the review, it was decided the following day that the investigation should be escalated and that the case should be taken over by Sweden’s security service, who subsequently confirmed that they had opened a “gross sabotage” investigation and could not rule out “that a foreign power is behind it.”


Suspicion was heightened on Tuesday when the German geological research center GFZ released a seismograph taken on the Danish island of Bornholm, close to where the leaks occurred, showing two recorded spikes of activity on the day the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines first experienced dramatic falls in pressure.

The seismograph recorded near-silence in the area of sea containing the pipelines until just after midnight GMT, followed by a sudden tremor that was repeated at 5 p.m. GMT, but GFZ declined to comment on whether the tremors could have been caused by explosions. They did, however, rule out the possibility that the tremors were caused by earthquakes.

Björn Lund, director of the Swedish National Seismic Network (SNSN), which measures earthquakes and explosions, was among the first to suggest in an interview with the Swedish television channel SVT on Tuesday that the initial 2.3 magnitude tremor could be the result of an “underwater explosion.”

Already, leaders of several Western nations have said that the leaks are likely the result of sabotage, with Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson stating her belief that the incident is “likely a deliberate action.”


On Wednesday afternoon, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg was franker when expressing his belief that the incident involved sabotage, tweeting: “Discussed the sabotage on the #NorthStream pipelines with Defence Minister Morten Bodskov of our valued Ally Denmark. We addressed the protection of critical infrastructure in #NATO countries.”

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Comments (0)

Write the first comment for this!