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Russia To Shut Down Svobodny Space Centre

Svobodny Space Centre
by Staff Writers
Moscow (AFP) Mar 14, 2007
Russia's Svobodny space centre, used in recent years to launch US and Israeli satellites, will be shut down Russian media reported on Wednesday. "Our authorities have received the official confirmation on this from Moscow," a spokesman for the governor of the Amour region, where the centre is based, told the Interfax news agency.

The administrative chief in the town of Uglegorsk, where the Svobodny centre is based, meanwhile said that an Israeli satellite launch was scheduled there for 2008, but could not confirm that it would go ahead as planned.

When contacted by AFP, Russia's military space forces' press service refused to divulge any information on upcoming launches.

The Svobdny centre was built in 1996 to enable Russia to conduct launches further south than its Plessetsk space centre in the north of the country.

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 Moscow lost its Baikonur base in Kazakhstan and has since been forced to rent it.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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JAXA Hosts Kyoto Workshop For Global Space Exploration Strategy
Kyoto, Japan (SPX) Mar 11, 2007
An exciting new era of globally-coordinated space exploration is foreseen by the fourteen space organisations who met here in Kyoto, Japan from 7th to 9th March 2007. Following a space exploration conference held in Washington in April 2006 hosted by NASA, the fourteen organisations created an informal 'Global Exploration Strategy' team. This group has met through workshops and teleconferences in order to prepare a long term perspective for space exploration.

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