A decorated officer in the Ukrainian military with “deep ties” to the country’s intelligence services “played a central role” and was the “coordinator” of the attack last year on the Nord Stream natural-gas pipeline, The Washington Post reported on November 11.

In September 2022, explosives caused the Nord Stream twin pipelines to be all but destroyed. Western officials initially blamed Russia for the blasts, but Moscow denied responsibility and instead blamed the United States and its allies. The pipelines are majority-owned by Russia’s Gazprom and supply millions of Europeans with gas. The pipelines were built by Russia to bring its gas directly to Germany and Europe, bypassing Ukraine, Poland, and other nations that had hostile ties with Moscow. While the first pipeline was operational, the second had not yet gotten final approval from German regulators. The United States had warned for years that the pipelines were a security risk for Germany and other European nations, making them beholden to Russian energy exports.

The report alleged that Special Forces Colonel Roman Chervinskiy took orders from more senior Ukrainian officials, who ultimately reported to General Valeriy Zaluzhniy, Ukraine’s top-ranking officer. It quoted Ukrainian and European officials and “other people knowledgeable about the details of the covert operation.” Chervinskiy rejected accusations that he was involved in the sabotage.

In July, investigators found traces of undersea explosives on a German yacht linked to the incident. The revelations were announced by Danish, German, and Swedish diplomats in a letter dated July 10. The explosions were discovered as residual gas bubbled up to the surface.

Since the Nord Stream incidents, there have been further attacks on energy and other infrastructure as the 20-month-old Russian invasion has continued. Last month, Finland said it couldn’t exclude that a “state actor” was responsible for more recent damage to the Balticconnector gas pipeline and a telecommunications cable in the Baltic Sea days earlier.

Primary Source: Radio Free Europe

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