Russia warns that sanctions may cause the collapse of the International Space Station
The head of the Russian space agency Roscosmos warned, on Saturday, that Western sanctions against Russia could cause the crash of the International Space Station, and called for the lifting of punitive measures.
According to Dmitry Rogozin, the sanctions, some of which precede Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, can disrupt the work of Russian spacecraft serving the International Space Station.
As a result, the Russian part of the station – which helps correct its orbit – could be affected, causing the 500-ton structure to fall “into the sea or on land,” the head of Roscosmos wrote on Telegram.
Rogozin, who regularly expresses support for the Russian army in Ukraine on social networks, said that “the Russian part ensures correction of the station’s orbit (on average 11 times a year), including to avoid space debris.”
He published a map of locations where the International Space Station could malfunction, and indicated that it was unlikely to be in Russia.
And he continued, “But the peoples of other countries, especially those led by” dogs of war “, should think about the price of the sanctions imposed on Roscosmos,” describing the countries that imposed these sanctions as “madness.”
Rogozin similarly raised the threat of the space station falling to Earth last month while criticizing Western sanctions on Twitter.
On March 1, NASA said it was trying to find a solution to keep the International Space Station in orbit without Russia’s help.
Crews and supplies are transported to the Russian part by the Soyuz spacecraft.
But Rogozin said the launch pad used for takeoff had been “subject to US sanctions since 2021 and EU and Canadian sanctions since 2022.”
Roscosmos said it had appealed to NASA, the Canadian Space Agency and the European Space Agency “to demand the lifting of illegal sanctions against our companies.”
Space is the last remaining area where the United States and Russia continue to cooperate.
At the beginning of March, Roscosmos announced its intention to prioritize building military satellites as Russia finds itself increasingly isolated as a result of the war in Ukraine.
Rogozin also announced that Moscow will not supply engines for the American Atlas and Antares missiles.
He wrote: “Let them soar into space on broomsticks.”
On March 30, US astronaut Mark Vande Hee and two cosmonauts, Anton Shkaplerov and Pyotr Dobrov, are scheduled to return to Earth from the International Space Station aboard the Soyuz spacecraft.
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