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Denmark closes investigation into Nord Stream sabotage

Danish police said today that they were closing their investigation into the 2022 sabotage of the Nord Stream gas pipelines linking Russia and Germany.

“Based on the investigation, the authorities can conclude that the sabotage of the pipelines was intentional,” Copenhagen police said in a statement.

“At the same time, it is also assessed that there is not the necessary basis for pursuing a criminal case in Denmark,” it said.

Neighbouring Sweden closed its investigation in early February citing a lack of jurisdiction, meaning only Germany now has an ongoing investigation into the leaks.

Four large gas leaks were discovered on Nord Stream’s two pipelines off the Danish island of Bornholm, with seismic institutes recording two underwater explosions just before.

The pipelines had been at the centre of geopolitical tensions as Russia cut gas supplies to Europe in suspected retaliation for Western sanctions over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

While the leaks were in international waters, two were in Denmark’s exclusive economic zone and two in Sweden’s.

The pipelines were not in operation when the leaks occurred, but they still contained gas which spewed up through the water and into the atmosphere.

Denmark, Sweden and Germany all opened investigations into the explosions.

All three countries have kept a tight lid on their investigations, which analysts have said was because of the potential diplomatic fallout of what they might uncover.

Copenhagen police said that the investigation – which had been carried out together with Denmark’s intelligence service PET – had been “complicated and extensive”.

It added that it was not in a position to “provide further comments” in the case.

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