UK to buy two specialist ships to protect from underwater threats from Russia

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Britain is set to buy two specialist ships to protect from underwater threats coming from Russia.

Defence Minister Ben Wallace announced on Sunday (October 2) that the UK will move forward with the purchase following leaks in the Nord Stream gas pipelines from Russia to the EU.

European countries say the Nord Stream pipelines were damaged by "sabotage" but have not directly blamed the Kremlin.

READ MORE: Russian TV predicts nuclear 'Armageddon' as Putin ships more missiles from Siberia

Vladimir Putin on the other hand has laid the blame for the damage at the feet of the West.

Speaking at the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, Wallace spoke about "mysterious damage" inflicted to the pipelines but made clear that he saw the threat to Britain's infrastructure as coming from Russia.

He said: "It should remind us all how fragile our economy and infrastructure is to such hybrid attacks… Our internet and our energy are highly reliant on pipelines and cables. Russia makes no secret of its ability to target such infrastructure.

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"So for that reason I can announce we have recently committed to two specialist ships with the capability to keep our cables and pipelines safe."

The Defence Minister added that the first "multi-role survey ship for seabed warfare" would be bought this year and would be operational by the end of next year, while the second ship would be built in the UK.


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