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Traces of explosives found on Nord Stream sabotage-linked yacht – NYT

German investigators have discovered traces of explosives on the Andromeda yacht linked to the Nord Stream sabotage last September, the New York Times has reported.

The information came from three unnamed German officials, the newspaper claimed in an article on Friday.

  • The same sources claimed that two out of the six crew members on the “pleasure” boat had used fake Bulgarian passports during the alleged operation against the gas pipelines.

In early March the Times had reported, citing US officials, that a “pro-Ukrainian group” might’ve been behind the attack that disabled the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, which were built to deliver Russian gas to Europe via Germany.

  • The paper’s anonymous sources stressed that “no American or British nationals were involved” in the sabotage of the key energy infrastructure.

The vessel, which had allegedly been rented by the perpetrators to carry out the attack, was soon identified as the yacht Andromeda. The boat is now sitting in dry dock overlooking the Baltic Sea in north-eastern Germany, with “its innards pulled out by investigators,” the NYT said.

According to an informed source who talked with Hersh, explosives were planted on the pipelines in the Baltic Sea back in June 2022 by US Navy divers during a NATO exercise, and detonated remotely two months later on the order of American leader Joe Biden.

The White House has rejected as “utterly false and complete fiction” the findings of the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist

  • In its report on Friday, the NYT also quoted Johannes Riber, a naval officer and analyst at Denmark’s Institute for Strategy and War Studies, who also questioned claims of a 50-foot (15-meter) yacht being capable of carrying out an attack of such scale, likening them to a “James Bond” theory.

Andromeda could’ve well been a decoy or part of a broader mission, Riber suggested. But planting powerful explosives at the pipelines would’ve likely required an undersea drone or a mini-submarine, and a professional ship to transport it, he pointed out.

  • However, the article also contained comments by an unnamed pipeline expert and a professional diver, who both claimed that small bombs could’ve been enough to cripple the infrastructure if they were placed near a seam of the pipeline.

Source: RT

Header: Unusual seismic activity on 26 and 27 September 2022. Guardian graphic. Source: Swedish National Seismic Network, Global Energy Monitor.

  • Each dive would have required the boat to be over the pipeline for about three hours. To have laid explosives on two pipelines 4km apart would probably have required four dives over a few days.
  • Diving experts say such extended deep dives would have required a decompression chamber for the divers, which would not fit on a yacht. There are also question on whether there would be room for the required explosives. The Danish and Swedish governments have said that the blasts were equivalent to the power of “several hundred kilograms of explosive”. Some experts say up to 2,000kg would have been needed.