NEW PHASE IN SPACE EXPLORATION
first Korean astronaut is a positive sign for cooperation between Korea and Russia in space
exploration and development, the Russian Ambassador said, congratulating Korean
astronaut Ko San.
are very glad in that Korea
has opted for Russia
as a partner in space exploration flight. It comes from trust of the Korean
government and Russian technology,” Gleb A. Ivashentsov, Russian ambassador
said to The Korea Times during an interview.
Ko San is to go on
the Russian spacecraft, Soyuz to the International Space Station in April next
year, and to conduct 18 scientific experiments. The Korean Astronaut Project
Division staff said the project would help expand Korean horizons in space
development, especially in its partnership with Russia, with whom it has already
been cooperating in rocket development.
Russia is a
pioneer in space exploration as the first earth satellite,
The Sputnik was launched in 1957. The first astronaut, Yuri Gagarin journeyed
into space in April 1961. He was also the first to orbit the earth.
the largest country in the world with territory totaling 17,075,200 square
kilometers. Most of the territory - the far eastern area known as Siberia- has
stayed undeveloped, and that's where the ambassador said Russia would want
“Siberia is a lot of natural resources like oil, gas,
metals, coals and everything. If we develop this resource, it will change, to a
great extent, the whole economy of Asia,”
Ivashentsov said, ”To implement that task, we need
cooperation among our regional neighbors. In this sense, we welcome the
participation of Korean companies in the development of energy and other
resources in the eastern Siberia.”
two governments agreed in October 2006 to build pipelines which would deliver
natural gas directly to Korea.
The ambassador said the Korean investment in energy would become more
profitable when the pipeline project is completed.
in areas like the petrochemical and automobile industries, Russia wants to
see more Korean investors involved, the ambassador said.
and geographically Russia
have been predestined to settle many common issues by joint efforts,” Ivashentsov
said. The six-party talks are a good example of “joint efforts”, and the
ambassador assured that to achieve stability and peace in North East Asia,
North Korea should stay a nuclear-free nation.
asked about its bilateral relationship with North Korea, the ambassador
answered that Russia
and North Korea
had signed a Treaty of Friendship, Goodneighborliness
and Cooperation in February 2000 as a mirror of their current relationship.
treaty includes provisions of cooperation in trade, the economy, science and
technology, national security and peace, the ambassador said. […]
ambassador advocated the regime's sovereignty, denouncing the Western nations
who insist the regime be brought down completely.
is a sovereign and independent state and it is the people of North Korea who
are to decide what kind of regime they'd like to have in their country. We
think that any interference into the internal affairs of a sovereign and
independent country that is member of the U.N. is unacceptable,” Ivashentsov