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Unhappy 15th birthday for Mir
Posted: Wed, Feb 21, 2001, 2:26 PM ET (1926 GMT)
Mir space station Russians marked the 15th anniversary of the launch of the core module of the Mir space station Tuesday as some lawmakers and others made a last-ditch effort to save the station from a fiery reentry next month. The Associated Press reported Tuesday that about 100 protestors gathered outside the headquarters of Rosaviakosmos, the Russian space agency, asking it and the Russian government to keep Mir in orbit. On Wednesday, the lower house of the Duma, the Russian parliament, passed a resolution calling on president Vladimir Putin to keep Mir in orbit. Those moves, however, are unlikely to have any effect on the Russian government's plans to bring down the station March 13-18. Rosaviakosmos head Yuri Koptev said at a press conference this week to discuss the deorbiting that Mir "must be sunk... to keep from subjecting people to danger," and added that the Mir situation "must not be politicized."
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