Russia has said that leaks in the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines to Germany were likely the result of state-sponsored terrorism, pointing the finger at the US.
The European Union is investigating the cause of the leaks currently spewing gas into the Baltic Sea and has said it suspects sabotage was behind the damage off the coasts of Denmark and Sweden.
It remains unclear at present who might be behind any attack on the pipelines, although this hasn’t stopped thinly-veiled accusations being made.
“This looks like an act of terrorism, possibly on a state level,” said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov , adding: “It is very difficult to imagine that such an act of a terrorism could have happened without the involvement of a state of some kind”.
Russia also said the United States stood to benefit, and pointed to the fact the leaks occurred in territory that is “fully under the control” of US intelligence agencies.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a news briefing that the US would be able to boost liquefied natural gas (LNG) sales, if the pipelines were rendered unusable.
CNN reported however that European security officials had observed Russian navy support ships and submarines not far from the leaks, citing three sources.
Asked to comment on the CNN report, Peskov said there had been a much larger NATO presence in the area.