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article imageRussia sheds doubt on joint Lunar space station with U.S.

By Karen Graham     Sep 23, 2018 in Politics
Moscow - The deteriorating political climate between Russia and the U.S. has apparently seeped into an agreement made last year between Moscow and the U.S. on the NASA-led moon-orbiting Deep Space Gateway.
Relations between Moscow and Washington have soured since 2014 after Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine. They have continued to go downhill after Moscow was accused of meddling in the U.S. 2016 presidential election.
Now, Reuters is reporting that Moscow may be thinking of dumping the collaborative project in favor of building their own orbiting space station, according to the head of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin.
“The Russian Federation cannot afford to play the second fiddle role in it,” he was quoted as saying by the Moscow-based news agency RIA. There was no further elaboration on the subject, although a spokesman for Roscosmos said later that Russia had no immediate plans to leave the project.
The International Business Times confirmed the Reuters story, adding that Vladimir Ustimenko said that the country "has not refused to take part in the project" with the USA, according to the TASS news agency.
Rogozin's comments follow on the heels of Russia's confirmation three weeks ago that it will stop flying US astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS) in April 2019, when the contract promoting the bilateral partnership on the project comes to an end.
In March this year, NASA confirmed it was pressing forward on plans to build a Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway (LOP-G), an outpost for astronauts positioned in the space near Earth's moon, after getting a green light from the White House.
More about Russia, secondfiddle, Lunar Orbital PlatformGateway, NASA, deteriorating relationship
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