08:06 GMT15 June 2021
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    Russia will continue using the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan for launches of piloted spacecraft at least until 2023, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said Monday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russia will stop using the Soviet-era Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan for lunar launches, according to Russian-based Rocket and Space Corporation (RSC Energia).

    "We have no plans to stop using Baikonur as we share with the Kazakh side the idea of implementing the Baiterek project at Baikonur, which envisions commercial launches for third countries from existing launch pads," Rogozin said during Arsenal radio program.

    "International commercial launches and launches of piloted spacecraft will continue from Baikonur at least until 2023," Rogozin added.

    Russia is already building a next-generation reusable spacecraft to replace the Soyuz family. The spaceship, called Federation, is due to be launched in unmanned mode in 2021, with a manned launch to the International Space Station planned by 2023, Mikrin said at the company's council meeting in the city of Korolyov near Moscow.


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