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Russia to lift ban on satellite imagery?

Russia: A draft to remove restrictions on the use of satellite imagery with less than two meters of resolution has been prepared and discussed by ministries and departments, according to Russian federal space agency RosKosmos.

Meanwhile, ScanEx published an open letter on its website reminding Russia about the former Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov’s statement. “Linear resolution better than two meters was not allowed to be shown before. Now it is already possible,” was what the minister is reported to have quoted in December 2006, as per the website.  The compant further claims that despite this announcement, Roskosmos issued the license for space activities in February 2008 with the restriction of right to receive and process satellite imagery data over the Russian territory at the resolution better than two meters. Roskosmos, with a reference to the General Staff of the RF Armed Forces, said that the restriction on linear resolution was not lifted and continues to be in effect both with respect to Russian and foreign RS satellites.

The company filed a claim to the Moscow Court of Arbitration requesting to force Roskosmos to lift the restrictions. Ministry of Defense was also called to the court as the third party but the ministry ignored it. Now, the company is planning to appeal to the higher authority.

Source: RIA Novosti & ScanEx