View Full Version : Japan Suspends Space Missions Until Safety Is Determined

John Lindsey
4th February 2003, 17:13
Here is the story:

TOKYO Japan's space agency has decided it will not allow any Japanese astronauts to participate in space shuttle missions until it has determined them to be safe, officials said Tuesday.

Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi had been scheduled to fly on NASA's next shuttle mission to the space station on March 1, which has been put on hold because of Saturday's fatal Columbia accident.

But Yoshihiro Nakamura, a spokesman for Japan's space agency, said Japanese astronauts will not take part in shuttle missions until their safety has been determined.

Nakamura said Japan will decide what to do after hearing the results of NASA's investigation into the Columbia accident.


Ok, does anyone else find this a little strange? Was such a statement needed at this time? Its not like there was any chance of Noguchi flying in March. I expect the flight manifests to be changed after the investigation, thus Noguchi might not even be considered for awhile.