U.S. declares ban on anti-satellite missile tests, calls for other nations to join
WASHINGTON – Vice President Kamala Harris announced April 18 that the United States will ban direct-ascent anti-satellite (ASAT) missile tests that create orbital debris.
“These tests are dangerous and we will not conduct them,” Harris said in a speech at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.
The self-imposed U.S. ban on destructive anti-satellite weapons tests is an effort to start an international push to develop “new norms for responsible behavior in space,” she said. Harris called on every nation to do the same.
Tests like the one Russia carried out in November 2021 and China conducted in 2007 are “one of the most pressing threats to the security and sustainability of space,” she said. The destruction of space objects through direct-ascent ASAT missile testing is “reckless and irresponsible.”