The Russian vessel tapped to finish the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline has begun work in Danish waters just days after the United States sanctioned its parent company.

"The lay barge Fortuna has started works in the construction corridor in the Danish [Exclusive Economic Zone], ahead of the resumption of the Nord Stream 2 construction. All works are performed in line with relevant permits," Nord Stream 2 said in a statement on January 24.

Fortuna will seek to build the remaining 150 kilometers of pipeline, including 120 kilometers in Danish waters and 30 kilometers in German waters, needed to complete the project. Nord Stream 2 is controlled by the Russian state-owned natural-gas company Gazprom.