If sanctions against Russia are not eased, Russia has threatened to halt cooperation with Western partners on the International Space Station (ISS) and other collaborative space programmes.
The goal of the sanctions, according to Dmitry Rogozin, president of Russia’s space agency Roscosmos, is to “destroy Russian economy and plunge our people into despair and hunger, to bring our country to its knees.”
“They won’t succeed,” he concluded, “but their intentions are clear.”
“That’s why I believe that the restoration of normal relations between the partners at the International Space Station (ISS) and other projects is possible only with full and unconditional removal of illegal sanctions,” Rogozin said.
Roscosmos’ ideas on when to stop collaboration with the space agencies of the United States, Canada, the European Union, and Japan over the ISS will be reported to Russian authorities soon, according to Rogozin.
He has previously stated that the sanctions had the potential to “destroy” the US-Russian relationship on the International Space Station.
One of the final areas of collaboration between Moscow and Western nations is space.
When the West imposed sweeping sanctions against Russia in February over its invasion of Ukraine, which Moscow describes as a “special military operation,” negotiations on the resumption of collaborative flights to the ISS were already beginning.
Last month, the European Space Agency said that it was halting cooperation with Roscosmos on the ExoMars rover mission, which is looking for indications of life on Mars’ surface.