У Росії назвали межі українських областей, які Москва намагається анексувати

«Українці досягають прогресу». Столтенберґ про звільнення Лиману

«Це свідчить про те, що українці досягають прогресу, здатні відкинути російські війська завдяки мужності, завдяки своїй хоробрості, своїм вмінням і сучасній зброї» – генсекретар НАТО

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Greece Says It’s Open to Talks with Turkey Once Provocations End

Greece wants to have a constructive dialogue with Turkey based on international law but its Aegean neighbor must halt its unprecedented escalation of provocations, the Greek foreign minister said Sunday.

The two countries — North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies but historic foes — have been at odds for decades over a range of issues, including where their continental shelves start and end, overflights in the Aegean Sea and a divided Cyprus.

“It is up to Turkey to choose if it will come to such a dialogue or not, but the basic ingredient must be a de-escalation,” Nikos Dendias told the Proto Thema newspaper in an interview.

Last month, the European Union voiced concern over statements by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan accusing Greece, an EU member, of occupying demilitarized islands in the Aegean and saying Turkey was ready to “do what is necessary” when the time came.

“The one responsible for a de-escalation is the one causing the escalation, which is Turkey,” Dendias said.

He blamed Ankara for increased provocations with a rhetoric of false and legally baseless claims, “even personal insults.”

Turkey has sharply increased its overflights and violations of Greek airspace, Dendias told the paper, adding that its behavior seems to be serving a “revisionist narrative” that it promotes consistently.

He said Turkish claims that Greece cannot be an equal interlocutor diplomatically, politically and militarily violates the basic rule of foreign relations – the principle of equality among nations.

“It is an insulting approach that ranks various countries as more or less equal,” Dendias said.

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Pope Calls on Putin to Stop ‘Spiral of Violence’ in Ukraine 

Pope Francis has called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to stop “this spiral of violence and death” over the war in Ukraine.

Francis’s remarks, made on Sunday in his weekly public prayer on St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican, were some of the strongest he has made since the February 24 invasion.

“My appeal is addressed first of all to the president of the Russian Federation, begging him to stop, also for the love of his people, this spiral of violence and death,” Francis said.

“On the other hand, saddened by the immense suffering of the Ukrainian population following the aggression suffered, I direct an equally confident appeal to the president of Ukraine to be open to serious peace proposals,” he said.

The Roman Catholic leader also decried the growing risk of nuclear war, calling it “absurd.”

“I deeply regret the serious situation that has arisen in recent days, with further actions contrary to the principles of international law,” he said. “In fact, it increases the risk of a nuclear escalation, to the point of fearing uncontrollable and catastrophic consequences worldwide.”

The pope’s comments came two days after Putin gave a fiery Kremlin speech in which he announced Russia was annexing four regions of Ukraine that are partially occupied by Russian forces.

In the September 30 speech, Putin also made veiled threats about using nuclear weapons in the conflict, echoing earlier remarks in which he warned the West “this is not a bluff.”

The Kremlin had no immediate reaction to the pope’s comments.

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Ian’s Catastrophic Impact and Trail of Destruction in Southwest Florida

As Florida reels from the effects of Hurricane Ian, the staggering damage and death toll from the powerful storm reveal the level of devastation. Residents of hard-hit Lee County recount the horrors of the hurricane. VOA Turkish’s Begum Donmez Ersoz has this report. Camera: Tezcan Taskiran

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Конституційний суд Росії схвалив підписані Путіним договори щодо анексії українських регіонів

Конституційний суд Росії заявив, що підписані російським президентом Володимиром Путіним договори про «приєднання» до РФ (фактично анексію) частково окупованих територій Запорізької, Херсонської, Донецької і Луганської областей «відповідають конституції» Росії.

Як йдеться в ухвалі суду, до 1 січня 2026 року на згаданих територіях діятиме «перехідний період», Путін затвердить тимчасових виконувачів обов’язків їхніх керівників.

Тепер спробу анексії, яку не визнають Україна і світ, мають остаточно оформити Держдума і Рада федерації Росії, ухваливши відповідний конституційний закон. Очікують, що це відбудеться 3 і 4 жовтня.

Не повідомляється, чи хтось із членів конституційного суду Росії голосував проти. У 2014 році цей же суд за тією ж схемою схвалив спробу анексії Криму і Севастополя.

30 вересня президент Росії Володимир Путін підписав укази про «приєднання» до РФ (фактично анексію) частково окупованих територій Запорізької, Херсонської, Донецької і Луганської областей.

Україна і Захід засудили такі незаконні дії Кремля. Київ, Вашингтон, а також Британія і Канада оголосили про нові санкції проти РФ.

Того ж дня президент України Володимир Зеленський повідомив, що Київ подає заявку на вступ до НАТО за пришвидшеною процедурою. У НАТО відповіли, що для цього потрібна згода всіх 30 членів Північноатлантичного альянсу.

Україна заявляє, що озброєним шляхом боротиметься за повернення окупованих територій під свій контроль.

Наступного дня після підписання договорів у Кремлі Україна повернула під свій контроль місто Лиман Донецької області і, за словами президента, продовжує наступ.

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US Supreme Court Set to Start Potentially Tumultuous Term

Fresh off an unusually rocky term in which it ended the constitutional right to abortion, the U.S. Supreme Court is embarking on another potentially tumultuous calendar of consequential cases.

The new term opens Monday, with Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson joining her eight colleagues as the first Black woman to sit on the bench.

But the period will likely be remembered for more than Jackson’s historic debut. Tackling issues such as voting rights and affirmative action, the new term features some high-profile cases that will likely be decided along ideological lines.

“On things that matter most, get ready for a lot of 6-3s,” Irving Gornstein, executive director of the Supreme Court Institute and a professor at Georgetown Law Center, said at a recent press event.

The high court’s decision to overturn its 1973 abortion ruling known as Roe v. Wade followed an unprecedented leak of the draft majority opinion that sparked weeks of protests.

Last term featured several other 6-3 rulings, including one that held that Americans have a right to carry firearms outside the home for self-defense.

But not every case will likely result in a conservative-majority opinion this term, Gornstein said.

He noted that Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh joined the court’s three liberals last term to produce at least five 5-4 cases.

Kavanaugh, one of former President Donald Trump’s three nominees on the court, has developed a penchant for writing concurring opinions that “declare the limits of right-side majority decisions,” Gornstein said.

“This is Justice Kavanaugh’s court,” Gornstein said.

The Supreme Court hears 60-70 cases a year out of the more than 7,000 petitions it receives. To date, it has agreed to review 27 cases during the upcoming term.

Here is a look at five major cases.

Two voting rights cases

The two voting rights cases, Merrill v. Milligan and Moore v. Harper, involve controversial plans by state legislatures to redraw their congressional maps and may have wide-reaching implications for how elections are conducted.

Merrill v. Milligan

Merrill v. Milligan is about the Southern state of Alabama’s congressional redistricting plan created after the 2020 census.

For decades, Alabama’s seven-member congressional delegation has included only one African American. But with the state’s growing Black population, civil rights advocates say Alabama should have at least two.

Arguing that the redistricting map packs Alabama’s Black residents largely into a single congressional district, a group of voters and rights advocates challenged the plan in federal court.

A three-judge panel agreed that the plan violated Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which prohibits voting practices that discriminate on the basis of race or color.

The judicial panel ordered a new map. But the U.S. Supreme Court overrode the ruling, agreeing to review the case during its 2022-23 term while keeping the contested congressional map in place.

Alabama says it seeks a race-neutral redistricting process. But voting rights advocates say that keeping the state’s redistricting plan in place will undermine minority voters’ ability to elect candidates of their choice.

Moore v. Harper

The second case, Moore v. Harper, involves North Carolina’s new congressional map and carries potentially even greater consequences for how federal elections are run.

It centers on a controversial legal doctrine known as the “independent state legislature theory,” which holds that the U.S. Constitution gives state legislatures near total authority to regulate federal elections.

Enter the North Carolina Legislature.

After the state gained an extra congressional seat because of the 2020 census, the GOP-controlled Legislature drew a map that would give Republican candidates a 10-4 advantage, even though the state’s voters are evenly split between Democrats, Republicans, and independents.

Voting rights advocates, suspecting illegal partisan gerrymandering, went to state court.

The state Supreme Court, with four Democrats and three Republicans, voted along party lines to declare the map in violation of the state constitution and ordered a new draft.

The U.S. Supreme Court denied the state Legislature’s motion to stay the state court ruling but agreed to hear the case. As a result, the court-drawn map will remain in effect during the midterm elections.

The case will be among the most closely watched of the upcoming term, and not only because of its long-term implications.

Voting rights advocates say a broad ruling in the case would give state legislatures near total authority to enact voter suppression laws and otherwise affect the outcome of elections.

Hashim Mooppan, a former counselor to the solicitor general during the Trump administration, said the fear that the case could spell “the end of democracy” is overblown.

Both sides in the case have presented the Supreme Court with “a menu of options,” and it’s far from clear whether the justices will adopt the most extreme version, Mooppan said at the Georgetown court preview.

But even if the justices adopt the “broadest possible theory,” state legislatures would not be able to “override the result of the election after they happen,” he said.

Legal challenges to affirmative action

Two cases — Students for Fair Admissions Inc. v. President and Fellows of Harvard College, and Students for Fair Admissions Inc. v. University of North Carolina — present legal challenges to affirmative action.

A ruling against Harvard and UNC, some legal experts warn, could spell the end of affirmative action, a policy that American colleges and universities have followed for more than half a century to boost admissions of minority students.

Americans are divided over affirmative action. Proponents say the policy has promoted campus diversity by providing opportunities for disadvantaged students. Opponents say it gives preferential treatment to Black, Hispanic and other minorities at the expense of white and Asian applicants, undermining the goal of a “color blind” society.

In 2014, Students for Fair Admissions, a group headed by conservative legal activist and affirmative action opponent Edward Jay Blum, sued Harvard and UNC, accusing the former of discriminating against Asian applicants and the latter of disfavoring white students.

In their defense, Harvard and UNC said race is one of many factors they consider in student admissions, citing previous Supreme Court decisions over the past two decades reaffirming the practice.

Lower courts sided with the two universities. But Students for Fair Admissions appealed to the Supreme Court, asking it to overturn a 2003 ruling that upheld the use of race in college admissions for the benefit of diversity.

The court could choose to uphold or restrict affirmative action rather than outlaw it. But with a conservative supermajority of six justices in control, the judicial tides appear to have turned against the policy, experts say.

“If you were just trying to count noses, I think you would think that there are more votes to be skeptical of these programs now than ever before,” said Roman Martinez, a Supreme Court litigator at Latham & Watkins said at Georgetown.

Speaking at a virtual event hosted by the American Constitution Society earlier this month, Deborah Archer, president of the American Civil Liberties Union, said that Black and Hispanic students remain underrepresented at America’s top colleges, and that ending affirming action would make “the system less equitable.”

Right to refuse service

The question of whether a business owner can refuse service to a customer based on the vendor’s religious beliefs returns to the high court with a new case out of Colorado.

In 2018, the court considered the case of a Colorado baker who refused to make a cake for a same-sex couple in violation of the state’s anti-discrimination laws.

Siding with the baker, the court found that the so-called public accommodations law itself violated his right to freedom of religion, but it shied away from ruling on the larger question of whether forcing the baker to design a cake would violate his free speech rights.

With the new case, the justices will weigh in on that issue.

The case was brought by Lorie Smith, the owner of a Colorado graphic design company called 303 Creative LLC, who says she wants to build wedding websites for couples of the opposite sex but not for same-sex couples because she’s opposed to gay marriage for religious reasons.

She wants to post a message on her website explaining her opposition to designing wedding sites for same-sex couples. But because of Colorado law, she has been unable to do so.

Smith sought an exemption from the law in federal court on the grounds that it would force her to “speak messages” that violated her deeply held beliefs.

Earlier this year, the Supreme Court agreed to hear her case during the new term but limited the review to her free-speech claim.

Colorado says the case is not about free speech but rather about whether a business can refuse service based on a customer’s race or other protected characteristics.

But with the conservative Supreme Court increasingly siding with religious groups in recent years, the state is unlikely to encounter a sympathetic court, experts say.

“The court is expanding both its understanding of what speech is and its protection of it,” Kent Greenfield, a Boston College law professor, said during the American Constitution Society event.

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Archives: Records from Trump White House Staffers Remain Missing

The National Archives and Records Administration informed lawmakers that a number of electronic communications from Trump White House staffers remain missing, nearly two years since the administration was required to turn them over.

The nation’s record-keeping agency, in a letter Friday to the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, said that despite an ongoing effort by staff, electronic communications between certain unidentified White House officials were still not in their custody.

“While there is no easy way to establish absolute accountability, we do know that we do not have custody of everything we should,” Debra Steidel Wall, the acting U.S. archivist, wrote in a letter to Oversight Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, a New York Democrat.

The letter went on to specify that the National Archives would consult with the Justice Department about how to move forward and recover “the records unlawfully removed.”

It has been widely reported that officials in President Donald Trump’s White House used non-official electronic messaging accounts throughout his four years in office. The Presidential Records Act, which says that such records are government property and must be preserved, requires staff to copy or forward those messages into their official electronic messaging accounts.

The agency says that while it has been able to obtain these records from some former officials, a number remain outstanding. The Justice Department has already pursued records from one former Trump official, Peter Navarro, who prosecutors accused of using at least one “non-official” email account — a ProtonMail account — to send and receive emails while he worked as the president’s trade adviser.

The legal action in August came just weeks after Navarro was indicted on criminal charges after refusing to cooperate with a congressional investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.

The House committee has jurisdiction over the Presidential Records Act, a 1978 law that requires the preservation of White House documents as property of the U.S. government. The request is the latest development in a monthslong back-and-forth between the agency and the committee, which has been investigating Trump’s handling of records.

The letter on Friday also comes nearly two months after the FBI recovered more than 100 documents with classified markings and more than 10,000 other government documents from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate. Lawyers for Trump had provided a sworn certification that all government records had been returned.

Maloney and other Democratic lawmakers on the panel have been seeking a briefing from the National Archives but haven’t received one due to the Justice Department’s ongoing criminal investigation into the matter.

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Latvia Prime Minister Wins Election

The center-right New Unity party of Latvian Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins won Saturday’s election, according to provisional results, with its 19% of the vote putting him in a position to head another coalition government.

The results — with 91% of districts counted — mean Latvia should remain a leading voice alongside its Baltic neighbors Lithuania and Estonia in pushing the European Union for a decisive stance against Russia.

Karins’ party was again the party with the most support following the election. Members of the current coalition were on track to receive 42 seats in the 100-seat parliament, so Karins needs to draft additional allies to stay as a prime minister.

As many as nine parties won sufficient votes to gain seats in parliament.

After a campaign dominated by security concerns following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Karins told Reuters he will be working to craft a coalition of like-minded parties.

“I am convinced that we will be able find such a solution,” he said early Sunday.

“First and foremost on everyone’s minds is how we all get through the winter, not only in Latvia but throughout the EU, and that we all remain united behind Ukraine, and do not waiver in the face of difficulties for us,” said Karins.

The first Latvian head of government to serve through a full four-year term, Karins, a 57-year-old dual U.S. and Latvian citizen, has benefited from his Moscow policy, which included restricting the entry of Russian citizens traveling from Russia and Belarus.

“I see no chance that any government in Latvia will stop supporting Ukraine — this is not a view of a small group of politicians, this is the view of our society,” said Karins.

But his victory could widen a rift between the country’s Latvian majority and its Russian-speaking minority over their place in society, amid widespread national anger over Moscow’s actions in Ukraine.

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Bosnia Heads to Polls as Ethnic Tensions Dominate Vote

Bosnians headed to the polls Sunday to vote in general elections following a campaign season marked by threats of secession, political infighting, and fears of future turmoil as ethnic tensions in the country grow.

Voters are casting ballots in a dizzying number of contests, including for the three members of Bosnia’s tripartite presidency, the deputies of the central parliament and a string of local races.

Polls opened at 7 a.m. local time (5:00 GMT).

Nearly three decades after war ravaged the Balkan country, Bosnia continues to be burdened by its ethnic divisions.

The Balkan state has been governed by a dysfunctional administrative system created by the 1995 Dayton Agreement that succeeded in ending the conflict in the 1990s, but largely failed in providing a framework for the country’s political development.

Bosnia remains partitioned between a Serb entity — the Republika Srpska (RS) — and a Muslim-Croat federation connected by a weak central government.

In the war’s wake, ethnic political parties have long exploited the country’s divisions in a bid to maintain power.

“I hope for nothing. I vote because that is the only thing I can do as an individual,” said Amra Besic, a 57-year-old economist, as she cast her ballot in Sarajevo.

Coalition clash

In the run-up to Sunday’s vote, the country has been torn between secessionist Orthodox Serbs and Catholic Croats demanding greater autonomy and electoral reforms.

The country’s Muslim Bosniaks will also face a choice of voting for a disparate, 11-party coalition that is trying to unseat the rule of the mainstream SDA.

The SDA is led by Bakir Izetbegovic — the son of the first president of independent Bosnia — and has largely dominated the political scene in the country for decades.

Many voters say that the lack of young candidates offering fresh ideas has left them largely uninspired on the eve of the elections.

“Most of the candidates that are running are the ones we have been watching for the last twenty years,” said Sara Djogic, a 21-year-old philosophy student in the capital, Sarajevo.

“There are not many who offer something new,” she added.

With little to no polling data available, analysts say incumbents and nationalist parties that have dominated the post-war political scene are likely to win many of the races.

The leader of Bosnia’s Serbs, Milorad Dodik, is seeking his third term as the president of the RS, after completing a stint in the tripartite presidency.

For the past year, Dodik has been stoking tensions with his frequent calls for Bosnia’s Serbs to separate even further from the country’s central institutions, earning him fresh sanctions from the U.S. in January.

Dodik’s primary challenger Jelena Trivic has vowed to crack down on corruption in the RS if elected.

“Our revenge will be the law,” Trivic said ahead of the polls.

Fears of turmoil

For the country’s Catholic Croats, political turmoil has also been brewing.

Ahead of the election, many Croats have been demanding electoral reforms with the leading nationalist party HDZ threatening to boycott the contest.

Their grievances are steeped in the vast numerical advantage held by Bosniaks in the Muslim-Croat federation, which has allowed Muslim voters to hold de-facto control over who can be elected to lead the Croats at the presidential level.

HDZ and other Croat parties have been calling for the creation of a new mechanism to allow the community to choose their own representatives to the presidency and upper house.

The move, however, has been fiercely opposed by the federation’s ruling Bosniak party.

With threats of fresh boycotts, fears are growing of potential turmoil after the polls if the incumbent Croat co-president Zeljko Komsic — who is widely reviled by all Croat parties that view him as a Bosniak proxy — is reelected.

The ever-present threats and vitriol have led some to skip the polling booth Sunday.

“I do not expect anything new after these elections. Everything will be the same,” said Mira Sladojevic, a pensioner in her 70s in Sarajevo.

“I haven’t voted for a long time,” she added.

The first wave of preliminary results is expected several hours after the polls close at 7 p.m. (19:00 GMT).

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Hurricane Ian Death Toll Tops 40

The death toll from Hurricane Ian, one of the most powerful storms ever to hit the United States, soared above 40 Saturday, as President Joe Biden heads to Florida later in the week to survey the devastation.

Shocked Florida communities were only just beginning to face the full scale of the destruction, with rescuers still searching for survivors in submerged neighborhoods and along the state’s southwest coast.

Homes, restaurants and businesses were ripped apart when Ian roared ashore as a powerful Category 4 hurricane on Wednesday.

The confirmed number of storm-related deaths rose to 44 statewide, the Florida Medical Examiners Commission said late Saturday, but reports of additional fatalities were still emerging county by county — pointing to a far higher final toll.

Hard-hit Lee County alone recorded 35 deaths, according to its sheriff, while U.S. media including NBC and CBS tallied more than 70 deaths either directly or indirectly related to the storm.

In the coastal state of North Carolina, the governor’s office confirmed four deaths related to Ian there.

Biden and his wife, Jill, will visit Florida on Wednesday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre tweeted, but the couple will first head to Puerto Rico on Monday to survey the destruction from a different storm, Hurricane Fiona, which struck the U.S. territory last month.

In Florida’s Lee County on Saturday, rescuers and ordinary citizens in boats were still saving the last trapped inhabitants of the small island of Matlacha. Debris, abandoned vehicles and downed trees littered the pummeled hamlet’s main street and surroundings that are dotted by colorful wooden houses with corrugated roofs.

The community, home to about 800 people, was cut off from the mainland following damage to two bridges, and those who fled early were only just beginning to return home to survey the destruction.

Sitting in the shadow of a deserted Matlacha house, Chip Farrar told AFP that “nobody’s telling us what to do, nobody’s telling us where to go.”

“The evacuation orders came in very late,” the 43-year-old said. “But most people that are still here wouldn’t have left anyway. It’s a very blue-collar place. And most people don’t have anywhere to go, which is the biggest issue.”

Sixteen migrants were missing from a boat that sank during the hurricane, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. Two people were found dead, and nine others rescued, including four Cubans who swam to shore in the Florida Keys.

More than 900,000 customers remained without power in Florida on Saturday night, hampering efforts by those who evacuated to return to their homes to take stock of what they lost.

In Fort Myers Beach, a town on the Gulf of Mexico coast which took the brunt of the storm, Pete Belinda said his home was “just flipped upside down, soaking wet, full of mud.”

Ian barreled over Florida and into the Atlantic Ocean before making U.S. landfall again, this time on the South Carolina coast Friday as a Category 1 hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 140 kph.

It was later downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone, and it was dissipating over Virginia late Saturday.

More than 45,000 people remained without power across North Carolina and Virginia, tracking website poweroutage.us said Saturday.

CoreLogic, a firm that specializes in property analysis, said wind-related losses for residential and commercial properties in Florida could cost insurers up to $32 billion, while flooding losses could reach $15 billion.

“This is the costliest Florida storm since Hurricane Andrew made landfall in 1992,” CoreLogic’s Tom Larsen said.

Rescues continue

As of Saturday morning, Gov. Ron DeSantis’s office said more than 1,100 rescues had been made across Florida.

DeSantis reported that hundreds of rescue personnel were going door-to-door “up and down the coastline.”

Many Floridians evacuated ahead of the storm, but thousands chose to shelter in place and ride it out.

Two hard-hit barrier islands near Fort Myers — Pine Island and Sanibel Island — were cut off after the storm damaged causeways to the mainland.

Aerial photos and video show breathtaking destruction in Sanibel and elsewhere.

A handful of restaurants and bars reopened in Fort Myers, giving an illusion of normalcy amid downed trees and shattered storefronts.

Before pummeling Florida, Ian plunged all of Cuba into darkness after downing the island’s power network.

Electricity was gradually returning, mainly in Havana, but many homes remain without power.

A new storm in the Pacific, Hurricane Orlene, intensified to Category 2 strength off the Mexican coast, where it was forecast to make landfall in the coming days.

Human-induced climate change is resulting in more severe weather events across the globe, scientists say.

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EU Leaders to Discuss Infrastructure Following Incidents on Russian Pipelines

European Union leaders will discuss the security of crucial infrastructure when they meet in Prague next week following damage to the Nord Stream pipelines that many in the West have said was caused by sabotage.

“Sabotage of Nord Stream pipelines is a threat to the EU,” Charles Michel, who chairs meetings of EU leaders, said in a tweet Saturday after talks with Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen in Brussels.

“We are determined to secure our critical infrastructure. Leaders will address this at the upcoming summit in Prague,” he wrote.

The leaders of EU member states leaders are scheduled to meet in the Czech capital on Friday.

Meanwhile, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also met with Frederiksen in Brussels “to address the sabotage” on the pipelines, he said on Twitter.

“NATO allies will continue our close cooperation on resilience [and the] protection of critical infrastructure,” Stoltenberg wrote.

NATO earlier voiced “deep concern” over the damage sustained by the Nord Stream pipelines in the Baltic Sea, calling the incidents “deliberate, reckless, and irresponsible acts of sabotage.”

Three leaks — two in the Danish zone and one in the Swedish zone — were discovered last week in the two major Russian underwater pipelines designed to ship natural gas to Germany, while Sweden on Thursday said its coast guard had found a fourth leak.

On Saturday, a Nord Stream 2 pipeline spokesperson told Agence France-Presse the pipeline is no longer leaking under the Baltic Sea because an equilibrium has been reached between the gas and water pressure. Information on the status of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline leak, which was significantly larger, was not immediately available, AFP reported.

The incidents come amid rising tensions between Europe and Russia over the war in Ukraine.

While both NATO and the European Union say the leaks were caused by sabotage, they have so far refrained from directly pinning the blame on Russia.

Some material for this article came from Reuters, Agence France-Presse and dpa. 

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