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Blinken: Russia’s alleged anti-satellite missile test imperils space exploration

US Secretary of State also said that The United States will work with their allies and partners as they seek to respond to "this irresponsible act"
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken Mandel Ngan/Pool via AP
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken
© Mandel Ngan/Pool via AP

WASHINGTON, November 16. /TASS/. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that Russia’s alleged test of an anti-satellite missile will obstruct the exploration of outer space for all nations, according to a statement from the US Department of State.

According to Blinken: "On November 15, 2021, the Russian Federation recklessly conducted a destructive test of a direct-ascent anti-satellite missile against one of its own satellites."

"This test has so far generated over fifteen hundred pieces of trackable orbital debris and will likely generate hundreds of thousands of pieces of smaller orbital debris," the statement continued. "The long-lived debris created by this dangerous and irresponsible test will now threaten satellites and other space objects that are vital to all nations’ security, economic, and scientific interests for decades to come."

"In addition, it will significantly increase the risk to astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station [ISS] and other human spaceflight activities," Blinken stated. "The safety and security of all actors seeking to explore and use outer space for peaceful purposes has been carelessly endangered by this test."

According to the US Secretary of State Blinken, "… Russia, despite its claims of opposing the weaponization of outer space, is willing to jeopardize the long-term sustainability of outer space and imperil the exploration and use of outer space by all nations through its reckless and irresponsible behavior."

The top US diplomat also said that "The United States will work with our allies and partners as we seek to respond to this irresponsible act."

"We call upon all responsible spacefaring nations to join us in efforts to develop norms of responsible behavior and to refrain from conducting dangerous and irresponsible destructive tests like those carried out by Russia," he added.

On Monday, the ISS approached space debris several times. This information came from NASA’s Mission Control Center in Houston. During the first two incidents, when debris approached the ISS, Russian cosmonauts Anton Shkaplerov and Pyotr Dubrov and US astronaut Mark Vande Hei went over to the Soyuz MS-19 spacecraft, while US astronauts Raja Chari, Thomas Marshburn, Kayla Barron and Germany’s Matthias Maurer went onboard the Crew Dragon spacecraft.

In the third episode, the cosmonauts stayed onboard the ISS, doing their routine tasks.

Later, US Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price stated that a Russian anti-satellite weapon’s test was behind the space junk, which endangered the international orbital outpost.