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Leaks on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline are over

Experts will now be able to focus on a single gas pipeline. Nord Stream 2, which connects Russia to Germany, has indeed stopped leaking under the Baltic Sea. “The water pressure has more or less closed the pipeline, so the gas that’s inside can’t get out,” Nord Stream 2 spokesman Ulrich Lissek said on Saturday. “The conclusion is that there is still gas in the pipeline”, he added, without being able to specify the quantity.

The Nord Stream 1 and 2 infrastructures, built to transport Russian gas to Europe, were damaged by underwater explosions off a Danish island in the Baltic Sea on Monday, causing extensive boiling. Information regarding the status of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline leak was not immediately available.

Objects of geopolitical arm wrestling in recent months, the two pipelines operated by a consortium dependent on the Russian giant Gazprom are not operational because of the consequences of the war in Ukraine. But both were still filled with gas.

Less and less gas in the pipes

Friday evening, the Swedish coastguard announced that the leaks on Nord Stream 2 showed great signs of weakening due to the exhaustion of the gas contained in the pipes. The diameter of the surface bubbling caused by the leak located in the Swedish exclusive economic zone was now only 20 meters wide, ten times less than at the beginning.

The leak on Nord Stream 1, more powerful, had also started to weaken on Friday at the end of the day, with a marine boiling down to 600 meters in diameter, against 900 to 1,000 at the start. The Danish and Swedish authorities estimated in a letter to the UN Security Council on Friday that the leaks should stop by Sunday, with the exhaustion of tens of thousands of tonnes of gas contained in the pipelines.

“All available information indicates that these explosions are the consequence of a deliberate act”, also wrote Sweden and Denmark, without however pointing to a responsible country. The origin of the explosions remains a mystery, Moscow and Washington denying any responsibility. Ukraine has claimed that the leaks were the result of a “planned terrorist attack” by Russia against European countries.

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