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Bass resumes training, faces late August money deadline
Posted: Fri, Aug 16, 2002, 1:56 PM ET (1756 GMT)
Lance Bass (MirCorp) The Russian space agency Rosaviakosmos allowed pop star and would-be space tourist Lance Bass to resume training on Friday, but said they had set a late-August deadline for his backers to pay for his flight. Rosaviakosmos has suspended training for Bass on Thursday, citing missed payments, but said on Friday that they had talked with Bass's backers and would allow his training to resume. Bass will also accompany the other members of the Soyuz taxi crew to Houston later this month for a week of training at NASA's Johnson Space Center. The people arranging funding for the flight have blamed delayed paperwork and renegotiation of some of the terms of the agreement for the delay in sending money to Russia. Rosaviakosmos spokesman Sergei Gobunov told AFP that Bassís people have ten days starting next Monday, August 19, to send payment or else Bass would not fly. "By September it will be clear whether Lance Bass will be traveling into space or not," Gobunov told AFP. Reuters and SPACE.com reported that the deadline could instead be as early as next Friday, August 23.
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