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Tipsheet

Russia Makes Major Announcement About Its Participation in the International Space Station

AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky

Russia has announced it will no longer take part in the International Space Station after 2024, instead focusing on creating its own orbital station. 

“We will fulfill all our obligations to our partners, but the decision to leave this station after 2024 has been made,” Roscosmos space agency chief Yury Borisov said on Tuesday. 

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The decision to leave, which has been floated since 2021, appears to have been triggered by increasing strains in the relationship between Washington and Moscow over the war in Ukraine and U.S. sanctions, including on their space industry. 

Despite the rift, NASA and Roscosmos made a deal earlier this month for astronauts to continue riding Russian rockets and for Russian cosmonauts to catch lifts to the International Space Station with SpaceX beginning this fall.

The agreement ensures that the space station will always have at least one American and one Russian on board to keep both sides of the orbiting outpost running smoothly, according to NASA and Russian officials. The swap had long been in the works and was finalized despite frictions over Ukraine in a sign of continuing Russia-U.S. cooperation in space. (Associated Press)

Social media users reacted to the news of Russia's exit. 

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The International Space Station has been in continuous orbit since November 2000 and is a multi-nation program operated by five space agencies from 15 countries, according to NASA, which plans to use the ISS until 2030. 

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