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MOSCOW: Russia’s space agency chief declares Venus a “Russian planet”

Moscow — If there is life on Venus, it might want to start learning Russian. The boss of Russia’s government space agency has claimed it as a “Russian planet.”

The bold territorial claim comes on the heels of scientific research suggesting life could exist on Earth’s celestial neighbor, the second planet from the sun.

Roscosmos chief Dmitry Rogozin, who’s known for espousing unconventional scientific views — and for frequently sarcastic anti-Western rhetoric — said this week that Russia wants to send its own mission to Venus, in addition to an already-proposed joint venture with the United States called “Venera-D.”

RUSSIA-SPACE-POLITICS
Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) and state space corporation Roscosmos head Dmitry Rogozin (L) listen to Director of Russian rocket engine manufacturer NPO Energomash Igor Arbuzov in Khimki, outside Moscow April 12, 2019. ALEXEY NIKOLSKY/AFP/GETTY

“We think that Venus is a Russian planet, so we shouldn’t lag behind,” Rogozin, a former deputy prime minister, told reporters on Tuesday. He noted that the Soviet Union was “the first and the only one” to land a spacecraft on Venus.

Discovery of potential sign of life on Venus

Research published Monday in the journal Nature Astronomy details British and American scientists’ discovery of phosphine gas in the clouds around Venus, considered a potential sign of life on the planet.

The atmosphere of Venus is made up almost entirely of carbon dioxide, and it’s considered the hottest planet in our solar system.

— cbs news