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The head of the Russian space agency has staked the country’s claim on Venus, saying this week that it is a “Russian planet.”

Dmitry Rogozin, who is the director general of Russian space corporation Roscosmos, revealed that the country plans to send its own mission to Venus.

This would be on top of an already-proposed joint venture with the United States called “Venera-D” that would include sending an uncrewed space mission to the planet in either 2026 or 2031.

Speaking to reporters at an international helicopter exhibition in Moscow on Tuesday, Rogozin said: “Our country was the first and only one to successfully land on Venus. The spacecraft gathered information about the planet — it is like hell over there,” according to The Times.

“Resuming Venus exploration is on our agenda. We think that Venus is a Russian planet, so we shouldn’t lag behind,” he added, CNN reported.

Rogozin’s comments come days after…

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