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The picture provided by The Finnish Border Guard shows Finnish Border Guard's offshore patrol vessel Turva guarding on October 11, 2023 at sea near the place where damaged Balticconnector gas pipeline is pinpointed at the Gulf of Finland. Lehtikuva/FINNISH BORDER GUARD via REUTERS

The picture provided by The Finnish Border Guard shows Finnish Border Guard's offshore patrol vessel Turva guarding on October 11, 2023 at sea near the place where damaged Balticconnector gas pipeline is pinpointed at the Gulf of Finland. Lehtikuva/FINNISH BORDER GUARD via REUTERS

Finnish Authorities Focus on Ships Near Damaged Pipeline

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 7033
October 17, 2023

Finnish investigators are currently examining the details of several ships that sailed in the area of a Finnish-Estonian gas pipeline and telecomunications cable around the time they were damaged earlier this month.

The investigation has primarily targeted vessels that were present at the time of the incident, including the Chinese and Russian ships Newnew Polar Bear and Sevmorput, respectively, based on information.

The Newnew Polar Bear is a containership registered in Hong Kong and owned by a Chinese company known as Hainan Xin Xin Yang Shipping, according to Equasis data. The ship recently made headlines after traversing the Northern Sea Route to Kaliningrad, Russia, where it arrived earlier this month.

The Russian-flagged Sevmorput is owned by the Russian government and is notable for being the last nuclear-powered cargo ship.

Detective Superintendent Risto Lohi from Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation said that in addition to the movements of the vessels, their background and previous activities are being examined in cooperation with authorities from other countries, hoping to shed light on the incident.

The Balticconnector subsea pipeline and telecommunications cable in the Baltic Sea was damaged last Tuesday, October 10, by what Finnish officials have described as “outside activity.”

A joint investigation team comprising the Finnish Police and Border Guard has been established to investigate the incident.

Meanwhile, Sweden today reported that a Baltic Sea telecom cable connecting Sweden and Estonia was damaged at roughly the same time as the Balticconnector pipeline and cable.

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