Russia launches Iranian satellite into space from Kazakhstan base

A high-resolution Iranian-owned satellite has been launched into space from a base in Kazakhstan on board a Russian rocket, amid speculation about its uses.

The remote-sensing Khayyam satellite, which Iran has said it wants to use for non-military purposes, was successfully launched on Tuesday, according to footage aired live by Iranian state television.

Earlier this month, The Washington Post quoted anonymous Western intelligence officials as claiming that Russia plans to use the satellite “for months or longer” to assist its war efforts in Ukraine.

The claim has been rejected by the Iranian Space Agency (ISA), which said last week it will have exclusive control over the satellite “from day one”, and Russia’s Roscosmos.

ISA said orders transmitted to the satellite and data received from it will be encrypted and controlled by a team of Iranian engineers and scientists in Iran, and “no other country has access to the information throughout this process”. The agency also emphasised that images from Khayyam, which are expected to come with a resolution of one metre, will be used to bolster “management and planning capacities” in a variety of industries.



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