Today, Russia has announced that it will not allow United States to use the ISS (International Space Station) after 2020, following the trade sanctions imposed over crisis in Crimea, Ukraine.
Russia’s deputy prime minister Dmitry Rogozin announced a series of revengeful measures against the United States in response to sanctions imposed after Russia for its aggressive annexation of Crimea.
Both US and Russia have worked together on space exploration for so long by keeping aside their disputes in foreign policies. International Space Station was maintained by crews from both the countries, but the only way to reach the ISS is via Russian spacecraft Soyuz. Currently, United States pays Russia $60 million per person to barge its astronauts to the space station and U.S. wanted to keep this $100 billion deal until 2024, while the agreement was signed for ferrying astronauts till 2020.
Dmitry Rogozin said in a statement:
“The Russian segment can exist independently from the American one. The US one cannot.”
Earlier in April 2014, NASA announced to cut all contacts with Russian government representatives because of the Ukraine crisis and the space station agreement was kept in exception list. In an internal referendum, NASA said that the termination includes teleconferences, travel to Russia, Russian government officials’ visits to NASA facilities and even the email exchanges between NASA and Russian officials were also suspended.
Though the NASA’s move was initially criticized as it did to get more US government funding, Russia seems serious and indeed motivated by the Ukraine fallout. Henceforth, US will not be able to buy Russian rocket engines for its military satellites, according to the announcement made by Dmitry Rogozin.
He also said that Russia will be suspending the operation of 11 GPS sites on its area from June and also has plans to open similar, Russia’s own satellite tracking system Glonass in United States. If the Washington won’t agree for Glonass sites in its territory, then Russia might permanently close the GPS sites.
Though he said that the suspension of the GPS sites would not affect everyday operations, it’s a known fact that it has been used by millions of Russians for navigation in their cars and on their mobile devices.
In April-end, Rogozin tweeted a joke in Russian language in his official account that US’ sanctions over Russia would boomerang against America’s space effort and essentially told NASA to take a flying leap … on a trampoline.
Reported by The Verge, NASA has released an official statement regarding this story, which reads:
[ Source ]
Space cooperation has been a hallmark of US-Russia relations, including during the height of the Cold War, and most notably, in the past 13 consecutive years of continuous human presence on board the International Space Station. Ongoing operations on the ISS continue on a normal basis with a planned return of crew today and expected launch of a new crew in the next few weeks. We have not received any official notification from the Government of Russia on any changes in our space cooperation at this point.