Russia now has free hand to destroy enemies’ undersea cables, says Medvedev

Former Russian president claims western complicity in Nord Stream pipeline blasts

Former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev said on Wednesday there were no longer any “moral limits” to stop Moscow from destroying its enemies’ undersea communication cables given what he said was western complicity in the Nord Stream pipeline blasts.

Mr Medvedev made the comments on his official channel on the Telegram messaging application.

US media reports have suggested that Washington was aware of a Ukrainian plot to blow up the gas pipelines. Kyiv has denied it destroyed them.

Unexplained explosions ruptured both Nord Stream 1 and the newly built Nord Stream 2 pipelines, carrying gas from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea, last September.


“If we proceed from the proven complicity of western countries in blowing up the Nord Streams, then we have no constraints – even moral – left to prevent us from destroying the ocean floor cable communications of our enemies,” Mr Medvedev, now deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council and a close ally of Vladimir Putin.

A sharp drop in pressure on both pipelines was registered on September 26th and seismologists detected explosions, triggering a wave of speculation about sabotage to one of Russia’s most important energy corridors.

It is still unclear exactly what happened, and western governments have denied involvement. Some US and European officials initially suggested Russia was to blame for blowing up its own pipeline, an interpretation dismissed as idiotic by Mr Putin.

In recent months, US newspapers including the Washington Post, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal have reported the US Central Intelligence Agency knew of a Ukrainian plot to attack the pipelines. Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy has denied Ukraine attacked them.

Sub-sea cables which criss-cross the world’s oceans have become the arteries of global communications. Their importance has made them the focus of growing geopolitical competition between China and Russia on the one side and the United States and its western allies on the other.

Russia has repeatedly said the West – and particularly the United States and Britain – was behind the Nord Stream blasts.

The Kremlin has repeatedly said that the world should know the truth about what happened.

Moscow has demanded an international investigation into the destruction of the pipelines, a Kremlin-designed project to circumvent Ukraine in exporting its gas under the Baltic Sea directly to western Europe. – Reuters