Is Russia leaving the International Space Station? Not enough.

The head of the Russian space agency said on Saturday that he would submit a proposal to the Russian government to end cooperation on th...


The head of the Russian space agency said on Saturday that he would submit a proposal to the Russian government to end cooperation on the International Space Station program.

On his Telegram social media account, Dimitri Rogozin, chief executive of Roscosmos, the state-owned company that oversees Russia’s space program, blamed sanctions imposed by Western countries after Russia invaded Ukraine of jeopardizing cooperation in orbit.

“I believe that the restoration of normal relations between the partners of the International Space Station and other joint projects is possible only with the complete and unconditional lifting of illegal sanctions,” Rogozin said.

Mr Rogozin did not provide details, including a timetable for when he would like Russia to end its involvement in the orbiting laboratory.

The space station has been hailed for years as an example of cooperation between Moscow and Washington in a post-Cold War world, and Mr. Rogozin’s recent suggestions about its future have served as an indication of the seriousness of tensions between the West and Russia. about Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

NASA officials, however, diligently ignored Mr. Rogozin’s statements that Russia might withdraw from the space station partnership and said operations on the space station would continue as normal.

On Wednesday, a NASA astronaut, Mark Vande Hei, and two Russian counterparts returned to Earth. Their return capsule landed in Kazakhstan, being met by Russian and NASA personnel at the landing site who cooperated to retrieve the astronauts safely.

The agreement between NASA, Russia and the other countries participating in the space station program runs until 2024. The United States plans to extend it until 2030. Kathy Lueders, NASA associate administrator for operations space, recently said discussions were underway.

“All of our international partners, including Roscosmos, are making progress towards extending the station until 2030,” she told a news conference Thursday about the upcoming launch of four astronauts to the space station on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

She added, “We all understand the importance of this ongoing partnership even in really, really, really difficult times.”

NASA is also working on other agreements with Russia. Ms Lueders said NASA was still awaiting Russian consideration of a deal that would allow some Russian astronauts to ride on future US rocket launches while some NASA astronauts would continue to launch on Russia’s Soyuz rocket.

Unlike NASA buying seats for its astronauts on Soyuz after the space shuttles were retired, this would essentially be a barter exchange with no financial payments.

“We’re still working on it together,” said Dana Weigel, deputy space station program manager at NASA.

A crew of seven, led by NASA astronaut Tom Marshburn and including three Russians, is currently on the space station.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Is Russia leaving the International Space Station? Not enough.
Is Russia leaving the International Space Station? Not enough.
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