The head of the Turkish Space Agency, Serdar Hussein Yildirim, said in an interview with TASS on the eve of Cosmonautics Day that the first Turkish citizen will go to the International Space Station (ISS) in November this year to conduct scientific research.
This important step, Yıldırım said, will increase space awareness among Turkish citizens and pave the way for future developments. In 2021, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan announced a national space program that includes training astronauts and sending his own rocket to the moon. The implementation of this project will cost Ankara about $6 billion.
In May 2022, Erdogan announced the start of preparations for sending a Turkish citizen to the ISS. Earlier, in September 2018, the former Director General of Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, announced the possibility of Turkey joining the joint project of Russia and Kazakhstan to use the Baikonur cosmodrome. At the same time, he announced the readiness of the Russian Federation to prepare the Turkish crew for a flight to the ISS in 2023, when the Republic of Turkey will celebrate the 100th anniversary of its founding.