MOSCOW, March 10. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov called the latest reports in the Western media about the alleged involvement of a "Ukrainian oligarch" in the explosions on the Nord Stream and Nord Stream 2 gas pipelines "incoherent babble."
"When they threw in the last wave of stories in the American and to some extent in the German press regarding a new version [about the causes of the emergency on gas pipelines] - about "the Ukrainian oligarch, who had better confess himself," [and that they] "did not want to talk about Ukraine’s involvement, because it could spoil German-Ukrainian relations" and all that jazz: this is incoherent babble," he said.
In an interview with "The Great Game" program on Channel One, the Russian top diplomat noted that even if one accepts the rationale about the "Ukrainian fingerprint" mentioned in the media, it will raise some questions in Germany.
"The burghers will wonder: why do I need this Ukraine at all, if they blow us up, whoever he (the saboteur - TASS) may be - an agent of Kiev, paid for by someone from abroad, or just a lone ranger, why do I need to send Leopards there, why do I need to admit this country into NATO?" Lavrov said.
"Yes, now [German Chancellor Olaf] Scholz is boasting: "We survived the winter, Russia’s plan did not work." We had no plans. They had plans - to abandon Russian gas. They survived the winter, but how much did it cost the government and the taxpayers? They are not very eager to tell," Lavrov said.
He also called the coverage of the incident in the Western media frivolous, citing as an example their information about the establishment of a "Ukrainian connection" in the emergencies on the gas pipelines.
"There was information in the Wall Street Journal, if I’m not mistaken, where they said that back in June and July, the CIA warned the secret services of Germany and other European countries about a "Ukrainian trail" for the plot. And in September, after the attack took place, The Times said that a week after the explosion it was established that the trail was Ukrainian. So, in June they warned that there would be [a Ukrainian trace] and in September it was established that it was. Anyway, they look at it in a very juvenile way, not the way an adult should," he concluded.
Sabotage of Nord Streams and probe
On September 27, 2022, Nord Stream AG reported unprecedented damage that occurred the day before on three strings of the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 offshore gas pipelines. On September 26, 2022, Swedish seismologists registered two explosions on the pipeline routes. The Russian Prosecutor General's Office subsequently opened a criminal case based on charges of international terrorism.
On Tuesday, the New York Times reported, citing US officials, that a "pro-Ukrainian group" that acted without the knowledge of US authorities could have committed the sabotage attack on the gas pipelines. The Zeit newspaper wrote that German investigators had identified a vessel used by the saboteurs. The company that rented it allegedly belonged to Ukrainian citizens and was registered in Poland.