Druzhba oil pipeline leak probably accidental: Poland’s PERN

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A leak that caused part of the Druzhba oil pipeline between Russia and Germany to be closed off was probably accidental, the Polish operator PERN has said.

“According to preliminary checks and based on the deformations in the pipeline, it appears at this stage that there was no third-party involvement,” PERN said in a statement late on Wednesday.

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“But detailed checks are underway to determine the cause of the incident and repair the pipeline in order to ensure that the supply can resume as quickly as possible,” it said.

The incident came after four leaks damaged the undersea Nord Stream gas pipelines from Russia to Germany.

The pipelines have been at the center of geopolitical tensions as Russia reduced gas supplies to Europe in suspected retaliation against Western sanctions following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

The leak on an underground segment in one of two lines of the Druzhba pipeline was detected late on Tuesday near the village of Zurawice in central Poland.

The pipeline mainly supplies the Schwedt and Leuna refineries in Germany.

The Druzhba (Friendship) pipeline network was started in the 1960s and pumps oil from the Urals to Europe through a northern branch via Poland and a southern branch via Ukraine.

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