An international rejection of Moscow’s demand for an international investigation into Nord Stream
Monday – 5 Ramadan 1444 AH – March 27, 2023 AD
Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vasily Nebenzia during a session of the Security Council (Russia’s Mission to the United Nations)
Washington: Ali Barada
Russia faced many objections from the rest of the members of the Security Council to a draft resolution that it submitted unilaterally, and then China joined in its adoption, requesting the establishment of an international investigation committee regarding the sabotage that targeted the “Nord Stream 1” and “Nord Stream 2” pipelines to transport gas through the North Sea. to Germany. Meanwhile, Kiev requested an emergency session of the Council to discuss Moscow’s declaration of the deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus.
Asharq Al-Awsat learned from diplomats in the Security Council that the Russian negotiators “insisted on keeping phrases in the text accusing the United States of being involved in this sabotage process,” in addition to requesting Russia’s participation in the investigations conducted by other concerned countries about the bombings that took place on September 26 ( last September, and led to the disruption of these pipelines that transport Russian gas to Germany.
Despite Russia’s diplomatic difficulties regarding the draft resolution, it decided to proceed with drafting its blue color without making additional fundamental amendments requested by several countries, which means that it is now ready for a vote on it.
The draft resolution denounces the “act of sabotage” that targeted pipelines, and expresses “concern” about the environmental and economic consequences of the gas leakage resulting from the explosions, as well as highlights the “threat to international peace and security posed by these acts of sabotage,” while stressing “the importance of conducting An impartial, transparent and comprehensive international investigation” into what happened.
It also urges the “involvement of interested parties” in the national investigations conducted by some Member States, in reference to the investigations conducted by the authorities in Germany, Denmark and Sweden. The text requests the UN Secretary-General to establish “an independent international commission composed of impartial jurists and supported by a team of experienced experts to investigate the incident and identify the perpetrators and accomplices.”
During the negotiations, many members of the Security Council, including Albania, France, Japan, Malta, Switzerland, Britain and the United States, confirmed that they did not support an international investigation while national investigations were in progress. However, these objections did not prevent China from adopting the draft submitted by Russia, given that “conducting an investigation mandated by the Security Council will not undermine the investigations,” according to the Chinese mission to the United Nations.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin also said that the international investigation, mandated by the United Nations, “can forge synergy with the existing national investigations, and lead to the truth sooner.” He added that Beijing takes note of “the position of some Western countries in the council,” calling on them to “be aware of their responsibility for the truth” and “abandon geopolitical and selfish interests.”
Other members, including Brazil, submitted notes suggesting deletion of a reference directly accusing the United States of involvement in the incident, while including a paragraph encouraging relevant authorities to share information on ongoing investigations.
Meanwhile, the date for the security session, which Ukraine demanded, to consider Russia’s plans to deploy tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus, was not immediately set, but a Western diplomat expected it to take place on Wednesday.