No less than eleven chiefs or representatives of space agencies from all around the world, accompanied by the Spanish Minister of Science and Innovation, have gathered in the Cnes chalet on June 18th to talk about international cooperation.
Invited by President of the Cnes Jean-Yves Le Gall (also President of the International Astronautical Federation - IAF), ten of his counterparts or representatives from the main space agencies from all around the world came to meet the press for 90 minutes during the Paris Air Show.
Among them there were Jan Woerner (Director General of the European Space Agency - ESA) , Giorgio Saccoccia (President of the Italian Space Agency - ASI), Pascale Ehrenfreund (CEO of the DLR Executive board - German Space Centre), Wu Yanhua (vice-administrator of the Chinese Space Agency - CNSA), Luc Brûlé (vice-president of the Canadian Space Agency - ASC), Umamaheswaran R (scientific secretary of the Indian Space Agency - Isro), Jim Bridenstine (Administrator of the NASA), Sergueï Saveliev (Deputy Director General for International Science and Technology Cooperation for the Russian Federation - ROSCOSMOS), Hiroshi Yamakawa (President of Japanese Space Agency - Jaxa), Mohammed Al Ahbabi (Director General of the United Arab Emirates Space Agency - UAESA), and also former ESA astronaut Pedro Duque (Spanish Minister of Science).
Bridenstine receives the most attention.
Everyone managed to present in four minutes his vision of exploration and the programs led in international cooperation before a question and answer session.
While the format and the duration of the meeting did not allow to have more than some general declarations of intention, everyone saluted the idea and the feat of reuniting such an unprecedented Areopagus.
Unsurprisingly, the charismatic administrator of the NASA and his speech in which he intentionally mentioned the return to the Moon received the most attention. He reiterated: “This time, it’s about dropping the first woman and the next man on the South pole of the Moon by 2024 and then stay lastingly on its surface by 2028. For each of these objectives, NASA will benefit from an international, either public or private, support”.