State Corporation “Rosatom“refuted assumptions about the alleged involvement of the nuclear-powered container ship Sevmorput in the accident on the Balticconnector gas pipeline, which runs between Estonia and Finland. Vedomosti was informed about this by the state corporation.
“The State Corporation Rosatom categorically rejects any assumptions about the involvement of the nuclear container ship Sevmorput in the incident with the Balticconnector pipeline. Indeed, on October 8, 2023, the nuclear-powered container ship Sevmorput was transiting from Murmansk to St. Petersburg. The vessel proceeded without stopping or slowing down (the average speed of the vessel during the shift from 00:00 to 04:00 Moscow time was 14.5 knots without significant changes), the anchor was not pulled out while moving, and no technological incidents were recorded,” – said in the message.
Rosatom emphasized that the area through which the gas pipeline runs is “an area of active shipping,” and therefore, in a four-hour period, there were several vessels of various classes in the water area. According to the report of the captain of the container ship, no dangerous actions were observed on the part of other vessels at this time.
Earlier, the Finnish newspaper Iltalehti reported that the Finnish police got interested Russian container ship and focused on its actions. In addition, the police were also interested in the Chinese container ship Newnew Polar Bear, which was passing by the Balticconnector at the time the mainline was damaged. Previously, the Estonian newspaper Postimees reportedthat at a normal speed of 11 knots, the Chinese vessel began to slow down as it approached the Balticconnector until the speed dropped to 9.5 knots. After 15 minutes, the container ship increased its speed again to more than 11 knots.
On the afternoon of October 8, Finnish Gasgrid reported a drop in pressure in the offshore gas pipeline at night. According to the company, the cause could be a leak. The Finnish government later admitted that the leak may have been the result of a deliberate act. On October 11, the Finnish government’s Foreign and Security Policy Committee reported that the damage could have been caused by “external activities.”
October 13, Russian President Vladimir Putin commented happened, calling the claims that Russia was allegedly involved in the gas pipeline incident “bullshit.” The head of state noted that he did not even know about the existence of such a gas pipeline.