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China wants Nord Stream saboteurs ‘brought to justice’

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning

China has accused the United States of “double standards” over its stance on investigating the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines in September last year.

Speaking at a media briefing on Tuesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said the saboteurs of the Nord Stream pipelines had to face consequences and that Beijing hopes the perpetrators would be “brought to justice” as soon as possible.

The diplomat further stated that Washington was “keen to carry out so-called ‘investigations’ of developing nations, yet is secretive on this incident.”

Mao said the US attitude was an example of “obvious double standards,” and suggested that officials in Washington were “afraid of” something.

Geng Shuang, China’s deputy representative to the UN, argued that there was no obstacle to holding an international investigation in parallel with national ones.

A Russian-sponsored resolution for an international probe did not pass a vote at the UN Security Council earlier this week. China, Russia, and Brazil backed the draft resolution for an international Nord Stream investigation in a UN Security Council vote on Monday, although 12 other members abstained.

If it had been adopted, the resolution would have requested the secretary general to establish a commission to conduct a “comprehensive, transparent, and impartial international investigation” of the incident.

The US claimed the proposal was intended to undermine the national investigations being run by Germany, Denmark, and Sweden.

The pipelines, which connect Russia and Germany under the Baltic Sea, were hit by unexplained explosions in September last year in what Moscow called an act of “international terrorism.”

Swedish and other European investigators say the blasts were caused by deliberate attacks.

Moscow has repeatedly complained that it has not been invited to the probes or kept informed about their findings.

The Kremlin said on Tuesday it would keep demanding an international investigation into the blasts. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said everyone should be interested in an impartial investigation in order to find the culprits.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last week that he did not expect the findings of investigations to be made public.

Veteran investigative journalist Seymour Hersh claimed last month that the attack on the Nord Stream pipelines had been ordered by US President Joe Biden and conducted jointly by America and Norway. Both nations have denied those allegations. Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week that he “fully agreed” with Hersh’s conclusions.

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