KRASNOGORSK, February 23 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on Saturday a global system to protect our planet from asteroids and other dangerous space objects should be created under the auspices of the United Nations.
“This system should become global and universal in its technical and political sense and is a matter of agreement in the framework of the United Nations,” Rogozin said at the meeting with Russian patriotic organizations.
Rogozin said this system should be launched now so that we do not “kick ourselves” when such a danger to the civilization appears because “no one can say exactly what will happen in 25, 30 or 40 years.”
“We need to find such technical decisions, which we don’t have now, such capabilities which could change the flight path of a dangerous space object at a long distance from the Earth or destroy it,” Rogozin said adding that neither Russia nor the United States has such capabilities.
The announcement comes days after a meteorite entered the Earth’s atmosphere undetected by existing space-monitoring means and slammed into Russia’s Urals on February 15 with a massive boom that blew out windows and damaged thousands of buildings around the city of Chelyabinsk, injuring 1,200 people in the area. According to the Health Ministry, 52 were hospitalized.
NASA estimates the meteorite was roughly 50 feet (15 meters) in diameter when it entered Earth's atmosphere, travelling faster than the speed of sound, and exploded into a fireball brighter than the sun.