Russia’s Cooperation on International Space Station Likely to Continue

Despite earlier claims that Russia would soon be pulling out of the International Space Station, the state-owned newspaper Ria Novosti recently reported the country may continue engaging in the joint space project. “There is a 90 percent chance” Russian leaders will agree to further its participation past the announced 2020 pull date, considering Russia is still making new modules for the station on schedule, states the article. NASA spokesman Allard Beutel told Air Force Magazine earlier this year, “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.” In May, Russian Deputy Prime Minister for Defense Dmitry Rogozin said Russia would be discontinuing its participation in the International Space Station in 2020 to look toward other projects, despite US authorities’ desire to extend the agreement to 2024.