Russia’s space agency Roscosmos has taken down the flags of Japan, the U.S. and other nations emblazoned on a space rocket in its spaceport Baikonur.
Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Olegovich Rogozin posted the now-viral video of the symbolic flag removal on Twitter with the caption: “The launchers at Baikonur decided that without the flags of some countries, our rocket would look more beautiful.”
Russia’s recent invasion of Ukraine has resulted in condemnation and sanctions from numerous countries, including France, Germany, the U.K. and the U.S.
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In the short clip, workers are seen removing the flags of several nations while leaving India’s flag untouched. India is among the few countries that abstained their votes, along with Bangladesh, China and Vietnam, on the U.N. resolution.
Explaining India’s abstention, India’s U.N. Ambassador TS Tirumurti said, “All member states should honor principles of international law and UN Charter, as these provide a constructive way forward.”
The Russian embassy expressed its appreciation for India’s position on the sensitive issue.
“Highly appreciate India’s independent and balanced position at the voting in the UNSC on February 25, 2022,” the agency tweeted. “In the spirit of the special and privileged strategic partnership Russia is committed to maintain close [sic] dialogue with India on the situation around Ukraine.”
Originally known as the Russian Federal Space Agency when it was formed back in 1992, Roscosmos is a state corporation responsible for space flights and other aerospace programs and research of the Russian Federation.