Putin blames 'Anglo-Saxons' for blowing up the Nord Stream gas pipeline in Kremlin speech

The Russian President has blamed damage to the Nord Stream gas supply line on attacks conducted on the orders of “Anglo-Saxon” leaders. Vladimir Putin used his address to the Kremlin on Friday to announce plans to annex four Ukrainian regions which are under illegal occupation by Moscow’s military forces. He went on to denounce suggestions of further Western sanctions against Russia and blamed the recent disruption to the European gas supply on “sabotage” by “Anglo-Saxon” powers.

Speaking from Moscow, President Putin said: “Sanctions were not enough for the Anglo-Saxons: they moved on to sabotage.

“It is hard to believe but it is a fact that they organised the blasts on the Nord Stream international gas pipelines, which run along the bottom of the Baltic Sea. 

“In fact, they have begun to destroy the pan-European energy infrastructure. 

“It is clear to everyone who benefits from this. Of course, he who benefits did it.”

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NATO reported: “All currently available information indicates that this is the result of deliberate, reckless, and irresponsible acts of sabotage.”

A joint statement issued on behalf of all 27 member states of the EU read: “These incidents are not a coincidence and affect us all. All available information indicates those leaks are the result of a deliberate act.”

Moscow has fiercely denied involvement in any sabotage plot and has instead suggested Western powers are behind the plot to disrupt energy supplies. Dmitry Peskov, Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, branded allegations of Russian sabotage “absurd,” noting that a Western tendency to blame the Kremlin was “predictable”.

Neither pipeline was in operation at the time of the leak. The Nord Stream One pipeline had gas supplies from Russia shut off after the Kremlin claimed the network required urgent “maintenance”. The Nord Stream Two project was still in development when Russia invaded Ukraine and was hastily abandoned as the conflict escalated.

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