16:56 GMT31 July 2021
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    Russia’s newly-built Vostochny Cosmodrome could be used for the Lunar program in the future, Kremlin Chief of Staff Sergei Ivanov said.

    COSMODROME VOSTOCHNY (Russia’s Far East) (Sputnik) – A Soyuz-2.1a rocket carrying three satellites lifted off early on Thursday in a first space launch from the newly-built Vostochny Cosmodrome.

    "It is a bit too early to talk about the Lunar one [program], because that requires appropriate space technology, but in the future I think yes," Ivanov said on Thursday when asked whether space launches for the Lunar program could be conducted from Vostochny.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin described the launch as a significant step in Russian space development.

    Vostochny has been under construction since 2012 and is expected to reduce Russia's dependency on the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan, which is on lease to Russia until 2050.

    According to Ivanov, Baikonur retains its significance for Russia despite the construction of the new space center in the Far East.


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