Joint Expeditionary Force defence ministers meeting earlier this year
Joint Expeditionary Force defence ministers meeting earlier this year (Picture: MOD).
Russia

Joint Expeditionary Force condemns 'blatant and irresponsible attacks' on Nord Stream pipelines

Joint Expeditionary Force defence ministers meeting earlier this year
Joint Expeditionary Force defence ministers meeting earlier this year (Picture: MOD).

Members of the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) say damage to the Nord Stream pipelines were caused by "reckless sabotage" amid suspicions that Russia is behind attacks on the undersea gas lines in the Baltic Sea.

In a joint statement, ministers from nations across the force condemned the incident "in the strongest terms" after meeting virtually to discuss the damage.

The ministers discussed an increased maritime presence in the region as the Ministry of Defence announced that a Royal Navy frigate was in the North Sea to protect the underwater infrastructure.

Russia has been accused of attacking the Nord Stream undersea gas pipelines, which led to huge methane leaks.

UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, who was part of the meeting, said: "In this period of heightened concern for all like-minded partner nations, it is right that we act with speed, agility and collective resolve to actively demonstrate our shared commitment to mutual security."

The ministers called the incident "blatant and irresponsible attacks against critical civilian infrastructure".

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The ministers also discussed increasing shared intelligence assessments to provide a common situational awareness.

The alliance will remain aligned and transparent with NATO, as well as the investigation led by Danish, Swedish and German authorities.

The JEF is made up of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the UK and looks to provide security and stability in the High North, North Atlantic and Baltic Sea regions. 

It provides a military force that works together at sea, on land and in the air across northern Europe in preventative military exercises.