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Russia Claims It Thwarted Ukrainian Attack On South Stream Pipeline

Russia’s security services claim to have foiled an attempt by Ukrainian special services to carry out a “terrorist attack” on the South Stream gas pipeline, the Russian Federal Security Service, FSB, said on Thursday. 

South Stream was a project from the early 2010s, later scrapped by Gazprom and Russia in favor of the TurkStream gas pipeline capable of carrying gas via Turkey to Hungary.    

“As a result of a set of investigative measures, the FSB prevented an attempt by Ukrainian special services to commit an act of sabotage and terrorism on the South Stream gas pipeline supplying energy resources to Turkey and Europe,” said the Russian security service, the heir to the KGB. 

Russian citizens “involved in the preparation and resource support of the terrorist attack” have been detained, and mines and explosives have been seized, the FSB said, adding that the attack was planned to be carried out in the Volgograd region in southwestern Russia. 

Meanwhile, Sweden said last week that traces of explosives were found near the sites of the explosions at the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea, noting that the incident is “gross sabotage.”

Gas leaks in each of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines were discovered at the end of September from the infrastructure just outside Swedish and Danish territorial waters in the Baltic Sea.

Earlier this week, Gazprom said it could begin reducing natural gas supply to Europe via Ukraine as of next Monday after noticing that part of the volumes through Ukraine were not reaching Moldova. Gazprom says that it has noticed some of the gas intended for Moldova under a contract with the local gas firm is being diverted by Ukraine. If the imbalance in gas transit continues, Gazprom will start reducing gas flows via Ukraine on the morning of November 28, it said. 

Moldova and Ukraine on Wednesday accused Gazprom of “blackmail” for threatening to reduce gas supply.  

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By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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