Illustration of the Kondor-E satellite in orbit
Russia on Friday successfully launched South Africa’s first spy satellite into orbit for a murky defense project titled ‘Project Flute.’
“The 115-ton Strela launcher — a modified Soviet-era SS-19 ballistic missile — blasted out of an underground launch tube at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 0443 GMT Friday (11:43 p.m. EST),” reports Spaceflight Now.
Russian President Vladimir Putin
The US and European Union announced a new wave of sanctions on Russian companies and political leaders Thursday in response to Russia’s continuing assistance to separatists in eastern Ukraine.
The Russian energy firms Novatek and Rosneft, the Russian financial institutions Gazprombank and VEB, and eight Russian arms firms that make tanks, mortar shells and small arms were hit with sanctions.
Wreckage from Malaysian flight MH17, which was shot down over eastern Ukraine Thursday.
A Malaysian Airlines passenger jet was shot down Thursday over eastern Ukraine, a day after a Ukrainian military jet was downed in the same area.
The Boeing 777 was at cruising altitude of 10,000 metres (32,808 feet) over an international air corridor when it was shot down, according to Anton Geraschenko, an adviser to Ukraine’s Interior Minister. All 295 people on board – Read more
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin
Ukraine accused Russia of building forces along their common border Monday, one day after a Russian man was killed by a shell fired across the border.
The Sunday killing marks the first time a casualty has taken place on the Russian side of the border, which also injured two others.
The Ukraine must now pay Russia’s state-owned gas company Gazprom upfront for its gas supplies, after missing a payment deadline early Monday morning.
The deadline set by Gazprom called for US$1.95 billion – out of US$4.5 billion it says it is owed – by 06:00 GMT. Earlier threats said gas supplies would be cut off if the amount was not paid in time, but there is no sign that has happened.