The European Space Agency has suspended cooperation with the Russian state corporation Roscosmos on the ExoMars mission for research on the surface of Mars. About it reported on the organization’s website.
The agency noted that they “fully support the sanctions imposed on Russia” by the European Union. The ruling council of the organization reportedly assessed the situation that arose due to the war in Ukraine and unanimously recognized the impossibility of cooperating with Roskosmos on the rover mission under the ExoMars program.
According to the project plans, in August-September 2022, the Proton-M launch vehicle was to be launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, which would deliver an interplanetary vehicle to Mars for research.
The head of the agency was instructed to take measures to suspend cooperation with Roskosmos and conduct an industrial study to determine options for implementing the mission of the rover within the framework of the program.
By words head of Roscosmos Dmitry Rogozin, this means that “in September 2022, the joint Russian-European mission to Mars has been canceled.” At the same time, he assured that Russia would send a mission to Mars without European colleagues and conduct an independent research expedition there.
On February 26, the head of Roskosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, in response to the sanctions imposed by the EU, said that Russia was withdrawing its specialists from the Kourou cosmodrome in French Guiana and suspending launches of Soyuz rockets from this site.
The European Union has introduced four packages of sectoral and personal sanctions against Russia. In particular, the EU banned the export to Russia of goods and technologies for the space and aviation industries, the provision of technical assistance and other services related to these products, and also imposed sanctions against Russian officials, the military, oligarchs and businessmen associated with the Kremlin.