Russia says US satellites are legitimate targets in Ukraine war

Moscow, Russia - Russia is threatening to attack US commercial satellites if they continue to be used to share information with Kyiv regarding the war in Ukraine.

Russia has threatened to attack US commercial satellites if they keep sharing intelligence with Ukraine (stock image).
Russia has threatened to attack US commercial satellites if they keep sharing intelligence with Ukraine (stock image).  © 123RF/cookelma

It is a dangerous move for the US to use commercial satellites for military conflicts, Russian Foreign Ministry representative Konstantin Vorontsov told the United Nations, according to state news agency TASS early on Thursday.

"The quasi-civilian infrastructure can become a legitimate target of a counter-attack," Vorontsov warned, saying the West is putting civilian space travel at risk, as well as social and economic projects on Earth.

Satellite images play an important role in the war in Ukraine. Several Western nations are providing Kyiv with satellite data for defense purposes.

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Since Russia's satellite network is less extensive, Ukraine has a slight intelligence advantage in this area.

Russia is certainly capable of striking satellites in space. Last November, the country shot down one of its own discarded satellites with a laser weapon, causing international outrage. The US criticised the move as "reckless" saber-rattling.

Russia dismissed the accusations as hypocrisy at the time, and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claimed the US itself was pursuing an arms race in space.

Cover photo: 123RF/cookelma

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