US, WASHINGTON (ORDO NEWS) — NASA has unveiled a draft of a series of agreements it intends to offer to sign to all countries wishing to explore the natural satellite of Earth, according to the newspaper The Independent. Russia is ready to discuss it, according to the Russian space holding company Roscosmos.
A draft of a series of agreements intended to regulate at the international level the exploration of the Moon was presented by NASA which claims to have already started negotiations with several countries within the framework of its lunar program Artemis relaunched in 2019, announced the newspaper The Independent.
The future agreements insist in particular on the exploitation of space for peaceful purposes, work in complete transparency, the use of compatible technologies and common rules.
Partners must help astronauts from other countries in case of emergency, openly register the space sites they have discovered, publish scientific data, exploit space resources in accordance with international agreements, not interfere with the functioning of others missions and treat waste responsibly, according to the newspaper.
According to NASA, the Artemis Agreements, which will be signed on a bilateral basis, are based on the 1967 agreement that currently regulates space exploration, but add some new details to it.
In early April, Donald Trump signed a decree establishing the right of the United States to exploit the space resources, namely the Moon and asteroids. However, it agreed to negotiate agreements with other countries within six months. Roscosmos qualified this decision as aggressive and considered that it harms international cooperation.
Exploring the Moon with or without Russia?
In early May, Reuters said that the Trump administration was preparing a new draft international agreement on the exploitation of lunar resources and that it would invite Canada, Japan, the European Union and the United Arab Emirates, then that Russia was not among the potential signatories.
The director general of Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, then compared this project to the invasion of Iraq, where the American army had carried out its operations without obtaining the agreement of the United Nations.
Moreover, NASA later qualified as incorrect the information on the absence of Moscow among the possible signatories of the Artemis agreements. She invited Roscosmos to join the Artemis agreements on the exploration of the Moon on May 15.
Russia ready to collaborate
On the same day, Roscosmos said it was ready to negotiate .
“Ambitious plans to explore the Moon could become an important area of Russian-American cooperation during this difficult time” where direct links between Roscosmos and NASA are becoming increasingly rare , said the deputy director general of the Russian holding company, Sergei Saveliev, in a press release.
In 2017, Moscow and Washington had already signed an agreement on the creation of a station in lunar orbit. But Russia later gave up participating in this project because of the insignificant role that was reserved for it: it was only to create an airlock and survival systems.
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