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Russia’s anti-satellite threat puts the laws of ukraine war in space to the test

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Russia's anti-satellite threat puts the laws of ukraine war in space to the test

CTN News –  This week’s warning by a Russian official to attack Western satellites supporting the Ukraine war shows an untested area of international law, worrying space lawyers and business leaders about security.

Senior foreign ministry official Konstantin Vorontsov reiterated Moscow’s opinion that Western civilian and commercial satellites support.

Ukraine war effort was an exceedingly hazardous trend, saying that “quasi-civilian equipment may be a viable target for a retaliatory attack.

No nation has ever launched a missile attack on an adversary’s satellite. Similar conduct during the conflict in Ukraine war might cause relations between Russia and the United States to spike significantly.

The co-director of the University of Mississippi School of Law’s Air and Space Law department, Michelle Hanlon, said that this danger has taken us to an edge that we’ve never been to before.

There has always been a feeling that something happen, but nobody has ever come out and stated they might do it.

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is a major provider of broadband internet

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is a major provider of broadband internet to the Ukrainian military via its low-Earth orbiting Starlink satellite network. American companies like Maxar are using satellites in space to take pictures.

Additionally, the satellite network of American satellite communications giant Iridium (IRDM.O) is used by tens of thousands of communication devices in the Ukraine war.

Iridium CEO Matt Desch told Reuters that discussing firing anything down in orbit for any purpose was “very reckless.” “Space has become pretty disorganized.”

I suppose it would rapidly render space uninhabitable if someone started firing satellites in orbit, Desch added. Requests for comment sent through email to Musk and SpaceX were not answered.

This month, the billionaire temporarily raised concerns when he said he could no longer afford to support the Starlink service in the Ukraine war latest news today. He swiftly changed his mind, though

According to the rules of armed conflict, a Russian attack on a satellite owned by a private American firm may be seen as an act of Ukraine war, to which the United States could retaliate, Hanlon said.

John Kirby, a spokesperson for the White House

John Kirby, a spokesperson for the White House, said on Thursday that any strike on American infrastructure will result in retaliation, but he did not provide any information.

According to Brian Weeden, a space policy expert at the Secure World Foundation, the legal issues of all this are pretty hazy at the moment.

There is basically nothing to go off of since we have no precedents of wartime deployments of force against satellites.


It is questionable, according to attorneys, whether a Russian anti-satellite attack would infringe on provisions of the 1967 Outer Orbit Treaty, such as its ban on deploying weapons of mass destruction in space.

Russia is a party to the Liability Convention of 1972, which mandates that nations must make restitution for any harm caused by their space objects.

Russia showed off a direct-ascent anti-satellite missile last year, destroying one of its outdated satellites in orbit.

Western authorities and businesses have charged Moscow with repeatedly attempting to hack and jam satellite internet signals across the area since Russia invaded Ukraine war map on February 24.

Anti-satellite missiles have received widespread criticism

Anti-satellite missiles have received widespread criticism from the West and astronomers for generating dangerous orbital debris that puts millions of consumer and governmental platforms throughout the globe that depend on GPS and crewed space stations in jeopardy.

The United States, which last tested an anti-satellite weapon in 2008, China, and India are the only other nations that have tested direct-ascent anti-satellite missiles.

In his remarks to a U.N. panel on Wednesday, Vorontsov did not call out any firms in particular. But SpaceX’s Starlink has distinguished itself as a persistent target for Russia, who has tried to jam the network’s transmissions throughout the conflict, according to Musk.

U.S. military has defended a network of thousands of linked satellites surrounding Earth-like Starlink as being resistant to prospective anti-satellite assaults that could only target the network without completely crippling it.

Lieutenant General Philip Garrant, the U.S. Space Force’s deputy commander of strategy and operations, told Reuters that it complicates the enemy’s equation. They don’t know which satellite to attack if there are a lot of them.

Around 3,000 satellites make up SpaceX’s Starlink network, while several dozen commercial American imaging satellites are focused on Russia and Ukraine war reports.

Weeden remarked, “Destroying one or two, or even a dozen, isn’t going to have any influence.

Related CTN News:

Russia-Ukraine War: Russia Lost 38,140 Troops, 1,677 Tanks Since Onset Of Invasion

Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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