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China calls for ‘international investigation’ into Nord Stream attack

Those who oppose a UN-led probe of the incident could “have a hidden agenda,” Chinese diplomat Geng Shuang has said

China’s deputy envoy to the UN has called for an international probe into the bombing of the Nord Stream gas pipelines, adding that Russia would be involved in such an investigation.

“With the situation standing where it is, one cannot help but suspect a hidden agenda behind the opposition to an international investigation, while lamenting the potential cover-up and loss of quantities of compelling evidence,” China’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, Geng Shuang, said on Friday, according to the Xinhua news agency.

“We reiterate our call for the early launch of a UN-led international investigation to bring the truth to light for the international community,” Geng continued, adding that Western nations should “actively communicate and cooperate with Russia and jointly investigate the incident.”

Nord Stream 1 and 2 each comprised two separate pipelines, linking Russia and Germany. Three out of the four lines were destroyed in a series of explosions near the Danish island of Bornholm in September 2022, severing Germany’s energy ties to Russia and leaving its gas-dependent economy reliant on more expensive American liquefied natural gas.

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Germany, Sweden, and Denmark all opened investigations into the attack, but Sweden and Denmark closed their inquiries in February. Swedish investigators published no conclusions, while the Danish team concluded that “there was deliberate sabotage,” but declined to blame the attack on anyone. 

China and Russia have demanded an international investigation into the bombings since last year. However, the UN Security Council rejected a Russian request for such a probe last March, with Washington’s deputy envoy to the UN, Robert Wood, accusing Russia of trying to “discredit the work of ongoing national investigations.”

On Saturday, a spokesman for the German Foreign Ministry appeared to reject Geng’s proposal, telling Russia’s TASS news agency that an “investigation is already being conducted by the German Public Prosecutor General’s Office.”

Absent any official conclusions, two competing theories about the bombings have emerged. According to reports in the Western mainstream media, a team of Ukrainian commandos used a rented yacht to transport explosives to the blast sites, with the CIA and European intelligence agencies being made aware of the plot several months beforehand but ultimately failing to stop it.

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American journalist Seymour Hersh has said that US President Joe Biden ordered the CIA to blow up the pipelines. Citing sources in the intelligence community, Hersh has claimed that CIA divers working with the Norwegian Navy planted remotely-triggered bombs on the lines in the summer of 2022, using a NATO exercise in the region as cover.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that he “fully agrees” with Hersh’s conclusions. Russian Prosecutor General Igor Krasnov, who is leading Moscow’s investigation into the blasts, said last month that “everyone knows perfectly well who did it,” and that “the tracks undoubtedly lead beyond the Atlantic,” – an apparent reference to the US. 

April 28, 2024 at 02:44AM
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