Russia will go to MARS by 2019
“We are planning unmanned and later manned launches – into deep space, as part of a lunar program and for Mars exploration.
“The closest mission is very soon, we are planning to launch a mission to Mars in 2019,” the president said.
Russia has not attempted any Mars missions since the failed launch of the Phobos-Grunt probe in 2011.
But it has been working with other nations as part of a global space exploration effort.
Putin’s latest gauntlet throws down a challenge to Elon Musk and privateers SpaceX, who also plan to launch a mission in 2019.