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A new US project to extract resources on the moon without Russia

A new US project to extract resources on the moon without Russia

It, presumably, will be attended by EU countries, Canada, Japan, and the UAE. Moscow has not yet been invited to participate, including because of the position of the Pentagon, which considers the actions of Russian satellites “threatening.”

The US presidential administration is developing a draft new international agreement on the extraction of resources on the moon, which is planned to include several partner countries, with the exception of Russia. It is reported by Reuters, citing sources familiar with the process of preparing the document.

According to the agency, the contract is planned to be named Artemis Accords. The project provides for the creation of “security zones” around future bases on the moon to prevent damage or interference from competing countries or companies working in the immediate vicinity.

The agreement also mentions the rules within the framework of international law, on the basis of which companies mining on the Moon will be able to establish property rights over these resources.

One of the agency’s interlocutors emphasized that the US territorial claims are not the basis of the agreement. According to him, security zones will allow for coordination between space-exploiting countries without declaring the territory technically sovereign. “The idea is that if you are going to approach the place of someone’s operations and there are security zones around them, you need to contact the operation in advance and discuss how you can do it safely for everyone,” he said. Source of publication.

According to Reuters, the US allies have not yet familiarized themselves with this project. Washington expects in the next few weeks to familiarize itself with the plan a number of states, among which are the countries of the European Union, Canada, Japan, as well as the United Arab Emirates.

Sources of the agency note that at the initial stage, Russia is not considered as partners of the United States, including because of the position of the Pentagon. In particular, the US military is concerned about the “threatening” maneuvers of Russian satellites. In this regard, it is opposed to Russia's participation in this project.

The Reuters interlocutors explained that this is not about establishing the US and its allies' sovereignty over any territories on the moon.

In early April, US President Donald Trump signed a decree in support of the commercial development of resources on the moon and other celestial bodies. The document stated that space both legally and physically serves as “a unique space for human activities and the United States does not consider it as the public domain”, therefore, the country's policy should be aimed at “stimulating international support for the extraction and use of resources in space” “.

In March 2019, Trump demanded at any cost to send the Americans to the moon, giving NASA five years. Subsequently, the department announced the Artemis space program, which provides for several stages: a crew landing with the first woman on the moon and satellite flights with the creation of infrastructure on it. For this project, the president promised to allocate an additional $1.6 billion to NASA. In September of the same year, Australia joined the program.

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