Russian Navy wants to inspect Nord Stream leaks

Russian deputy prime minister Alexander Novak said on Friday October 14th that he wants Russian Navy vessels to conduct investigations into explosions that damaged Nord Stream pipelines in the Baltic Sea.

He said that the navy wanted permission for its ships to investigate, without specifying whose permission he was seeking.

Nord Stream AG, owner of the older Nord Stream 1 pipeline, said last week that the owner of a survey vessel it chartered did not have permission from the Norwegian foreign ministry to depart and start assessing ruptures to the pipelines.

Novak said that “the whole question is in the access for our vessels, which should have rights of passage”.

Russia said on Thursday it had summoned diplomats from Germany, Denmark and Sweden to complain that representatives from Moscow and Gazprom had not been invited to join an investigation into the leaks in the gas pipelines. Although the pipelines run from Russia, the ruptures occurred near to lands within the boundaries of Sweden and Denmark, and some considerable distance from the main body of Russia.

Sweden had previously rejected calls from Russian authorities to be part of the investigation. It also said that it would not share any findings before the investigation was completed.

The Danish foreign ministry said on Thursday “the Russian wish to participate in the investigation of the Nord Stream leaks has been brought up through diplomatic channels in Moscow and Copenhagen”, without commenting on whether it would agree to or oppose the idea.