By Agnes Szucs
BRUSSELS (AA) - NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and Danish defense minister Morten Bodskov on Wednesday discussed unexplained leaks in two Russian gas pipelines under the Baltic Sea.
“I discussed the sabotage on the Nord Stream pipelines with Defense Minister Bodskov of our valued ally Denmark,” Stoltenberg said on Twitter, following a meeting at the NATO headquarters in Brussels.
"We addressed the protection of critical infrastructure in NATO countries," he added.
In a statement after the meeting, Bodskov called the leaks deliberate. "There is reason to be concerned about the security situation in the Baltic Sea region. Despite the war efforts in Ukraine, Russia has a significant military presence in the Baltic Sea region," he said.
Two leaks were found on Nord Stream 1, which Moscow shut down earlier this month indefinitely, and another leak was discovered on Nord Stream 2, which was frozen following Russia's war on Ukraine and has never been operational.
While Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said the leaks were an act of sabotage, his Danish counterpart Mette Frederiksen said it was hard to imagine they were a “coincidence.”
EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen also called it "sabotage action," and the bloc's foreign policy chief, Josep Borell, agreed saying "all available information indicates leaks are the result of a deliberate act."
European Council President Charles Michel tweeted that the leaks are "sabotage acts" and appear to be an attempt to "further destabilize energy supply to EU.”
Halt in Russian gas supplies have caused prices to soar across Europe, sparking a search for alternative energy supplies.
* Waleed Tariq contributed to this report