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Lithuania Becomes Latest Signatory to the Artemis Accords

Credits: NASA, James Cawley

Ibadan, 17 May 2024. – Lithuania has become the latest and 40th signatory to the Artemis Accords, joining NASA and the international coalition in pursuit of safer space exploration. The ceremony took place in Vilnius, Lithuania, and signifies a continued push toward transparency and peace as more nations traverse farther into space.

Ambassador Kara C. McDonald attended the ceremony to speak on behalf of the U.S., and Aušrinė Armonaitė, Lithuanian Minister of Economy and Innovation, signed the Accords. Furthermore, remarks from NASA Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy played before the signing.

Speaking on the occasion, Armonaitė said, “The Lithuanian space sector has been growing steadily, with our innovative companies working in this field making significant strides. The Artemis Accords mark a new chapter and chart a course for future space exploration, underscoring our commitment to a responsible, sustainable, and cooperative presence in space.”

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson also commented, “Welcome to the Artemis Accords family, Lithuania. Our nations are strong partners – and now we expand this partnership to the cosmos.” Nelson also added, “In just four years, a remarkable 40 countries have signed the Artemis Accords. Together, as a global coalition, we will explore the stars openly, responsibly, and in peace.”

NASA, along with the Department of State and seven other nations, established the Artemis Accords in 2020 to lay out a set of principles grounded in the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 and three related space treaties. With the commitment of now 40 nations, the accords community will facilitate a long-term and peaceful presence of deep space exploration for the benefit of humanity.

Furthermore, the Artemis Accords align with NASA’s Artemis campaign, which will send astronauts to explore the Moon for scientific discovery, and economic benefits, and to build the foundation for crewed missions to Mars.

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