U.S. discusses space-sharing activities with allies in New Zealand

U.S. military officials, who have been building international partnerships in order to keep better track of all the objects orbiting the Earth and improve space operations, met in New Zealand this week to discuss space-sharing activities with their counterparts in that country, along with representatives from the U.K., Australia and Canada.

The U.S. is continuing to bolster its partnerships in space towards greater space situational awareness.  Officials from the U.S. joined members of the New Zealand Defense Force in Wellington, New Zealand from Oct. 12-13 to discuss space-sharing activities between the two along with the U.K., Australia and Canada outlined.

The meetings in Wellington, New Zealand, afforded participants greater understanding of existing and future space environments as well as an awareness of space capabilities to support military-to-military partnerships and how to address the challenges of space operations, including those for peaceful purposes, according to a Strategic Command release.

"As space becomes more congested and contested, it is imperative that we work together to ensure we preserve access,” said Tom Atkin, deputy assistant secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense and Global Security. “Coalitions and partnerships represent a necessary step within national security that increases transparency, strengthens deterrence, improves mission assurance, enhances resilience and optimizes resources across participating nations.”

“This meeting is another opportunity to recognize and reinforce, along with our [Combined Space Operations] partners, the importance of acting responsibly in, and maintaining the peaceful use of, space,” said Navy Adm. Cecil Haney, commander of Strategic Command.

Within the past year, the U.S. has entered into space situational awareness agreements with Israel and Germany, adding to a list of partners that includes the United Kingdom, the Republic of Korea, France, Canada, Italy, Japan and Australia, as well as two international organizations – the European Space Agency and the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites.

About the Author

Mark Pomerleau is a former editorial fellow with GCN and Defense Systems.

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