UK Space Directorate Expresses Concern About Alleged Anti-Satellite Missile Test by Russia
14:58 GMT 17.12.2020
MOSCOW, (Sputnik) - The head of the UK Space Directorate, Air Vice-Marshal Harv Smyth, on Thursday accused Russia of conducting a new space test of anti-satellite weapons and expressed concern in this regard, following a similar statement by the US Air Force Space Command.
Smyth did not indicate the date and place of the tests but alleged that Moscow was developing and testing several types of space weapons, including laser weapons. The United States' Space Command accused Russia of testing a missile intended to target satellites in orbit on Wednesday, also without providing evidence. The Russian authorities have not yet responded to these accusations.
"Russia has again fired an anti satellite missile into Space: this behaviour is deeply concerning. Consequences of miscalculations and accidents have the potential to be catastrophic. We continue to ask Russia to engage in UN dialogue on responsible space behaviours," Smith wrote on Twitter.
Responding to a similar statement in April, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that the Pentagon seeks to justify its own anti-satellite missile development by directing such accusations at Moscow.
Both the US and Russia are parties to the Outer Space Treaty, along with China, India, the UK and over 100 other nations, prohibiting the militarization of space. The treaty does not prohibit countries from developing technology to shoot down their own defunct satellites, with all of the US, Russia, China and India having demonstrated the capability to do so.
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