Russia to quit International Space Station after 2024

New York: Russia announced its withdrawal from the International Space Station (ISS) project after 2024 and is building its own space station in the meantime.

The announcement comes as tensions rage between the Kremlin and the West over Moscow’s military intervention in Ukraine and several rounds of unprecedented sanctions against Russia.

According to Yuri Borisov, the new head of Russia’s state space corporation Roscosmos, the country will begin to form the Russian Orbital Service Station (ROSS) by that time, reports Tass news agency.

Borisov conveyed the decision reportedly to Russian President Vladimir Putin during a meeting. “Of course, we will fulfill all our obligations to our partners, but the decision to leave this station after 2024 has been made,” Borisov was quoted as saying.

He said that the main priority of the Russian Federation will be the creation of ROSS. “We will continue the manned program in accordance with the approved plans. The main priorities will be made on the creation of the Russian orbital station,” Borisov said.

Earlier this year, former Roscosmos chief Dmitry Rogozin said that due to financial constraints, it was difficult to simultaneously implement the ISS project and build a new station.

Russia this month fired Rogozin, known for making wildly outlandish statements and threats against the US space agency NASA. Rogozin has been in charge of Roscosmos since his appointment as director general in 2018.

Russia and the United States have worked side by side on the ISS, which has been in orbit since 1998. Until now space exploration was one of the few areas where cooperation between Russia and the United States and its allies had not been wrecked by tensions over Ukraine and elsewhere.

Image courtesy of (Photo courtesy: NASA)

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