The head of Russia’s space agency, Dmitry Rogozin has announced on Russian state TV that the country will be leaving the International Space Station (ISS).
“The decision has been taken already, we’re not obliged to talk about it publicly. I can say this only – in accordance with our obligations, we’ll inform our partners about the end of our work on the ISS with a year’s notice,” Rogozin said.
Rogozin went on to say that the decision was based on the result of economic sanctions imposed as a result of the country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Several countries have imposed economic sanctions against Russia, President Vladimir Putin and several oligarchs who form part of Putin’s inner circle.
Business Insider reports that for years, the space station had been a bright spot in US-Russia relations, which is notable given the past relationship that the countries had in the Cold War-era “space race,” where they both aggressively sought to achieve dominance in the exploration of outer space.
There are currently three Americans, three Russians, and a German on board and they have now been joined by another three Americans and an Italian astronaut earlier this week.
Bloomberg reports that NASA reportedly intends to continue running the space station through 2030.
Image credit: European Space Agency