(RIA Novosti) - Kazakhstan has banned launches of Russian Dnepr carrier rockets from its Baikonur space center following a crash on July 27, the head of a Kazakh governmental commission investigating the accident said Tuesday.
A Dnepr carrier rocket carrying a large payload of satellites crashed four days ago shortly after liftoff from the Baikonur space center, which Russia rents from the Central Asian country, due to a first stage engine shutdown, reports Trend.
"Under Point 5 of the 1999 Russia-Kazakhstan agreement on joint actions in the event of accidents at the Baikonur space center, all launches of rocket carriers that crashed are halted," the Kazakh official said.
The Dnepr's wreckage was discovered at Thursday, 150 kilometers (93 miles) from the space center on a steppe, a long distance from any residential buildings. Kazakh officials said there had been no casualties or environmental damage from the accident.
The carrier rocket, a civilian version of the heavy R-36M2 Voyevoda (SS-18 Satan) intercontinental ballistic missile, was launched around midnight Wednesday (8 p.m. GMT), and would have orbited 18 Russian and foreign-made mini-satellites.