The officials said they had no evidence that Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky or top lieutenants were involved in the attack. They also ruled out that "the perpetrators acted under the direction of any Ukrainian government official."
The operation "could have been carried out unofficially by a 'proxy' force with connections to the Ukrainian government or its security services," the Times said, noting that there is also no evidence that Russian authorities were involved in the explosions.
The anonymous officials said that "more likely that the explosives were placed with the help of experienced divers who do not appear to work for the military or intelligence services." They added that the perpetrators may have received "specialized training from the government in the past."
Journalist Seymour Hersh laughed about The New York Times piece on Nord Stream, but declined to comment