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Finland, Estonia jointly probe into gas pipeline damage

Published : 13 Oct 2023, 01:25

  DF Report
File Photo: Baltic Connector Oy.

Finland and Estonia are jointly investigating into the damage to the Baltic Connector gas pipeline and a data cable between Finland and Estonia took place on October 8.

President Sauli Niinistö and Prime Minister Petteri Orpo on Thursday held separate discussions with Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas and discussed the progress of the investigation.

“We updated once again each other with Kaja kallas on Baltic Connector. Investigations are still ongoing, Finland and Estonia cooperation works at all levels,” Orpo wrote in his twitter on Thursday.

Meanwhile, President Sauli Niinistö on Thursday held a meeting with kallas in Sweden ahead of the JEF Leaders’ Summit and discussed the security of undersea infrastructure.

“Good to update views with Prime Minister Kaja Kallas on security and our common undersea infrastructure. We are focusing on the ongoing investigation,” Niinistö wrote in his twitter late Thursday night.

“Met the President of Finland Niinisto ahead of the JEF nations summit in Visby. Discussed security in the Baltic Sea region, including how to increase protection of EU and NATO critical infrastructure,” Kallas wrote in her twitter late Thursday night.

News agency Xinhua adds: Finnish and Estonian police are set to jointly investigate the breach in the Balticconnector gas pipeline and a data cable, which took place last weekend, reported Xinhua.

The Finnish National Bureau of Investigation announced the cooperation on Thursday, emphasizing the progress made in ascertaining the ships that had been in the area at the time.

National broadcaster Yle reported on Thursday that the focus is now on the ships that were in the area on the surface, rather than on underwater activities.

Both the Finnish navy and frontier guards have gathered data on maritime traffic and provided support to the police. NATO intelligence and situation reports have also been used for the probe, Yle reported.

Finnish Defense Minister Antti Häkkänen and Estonian Defence Minister Hanno Pevkur said on Wednesday that Finland and Estonia are currently investigating the matter without NATO participation. However, NATO has pledged to give support if required.

On Tuesday morning, the exact location of the leak was identified in Finland's Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). President Sauli Niinistö and Prime Minister Petteri Orpo said on Tuesday that the damage was likely caused by "external activity."