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Russia to Drop Out of International Space Station After 2024

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Moscow (AP) -- Russia will pull out of the International Space Station after 2024 and focus on building its own orbiting outpost, the country's new space chief said Tuesday amid high tensions between Moscow and the West over the fighting in Ukraine.

The announcement, while not unexpected, throws into question the future of the 24-year-old space station, with experts saying it would be extremely difficult — perhaps a “nightmare," by one reckoning — to keep it running without the Russians. NASA and its partners had hoped to continue operating it until 2030.