Obama assigns NASA Chief engaging with Muslim world as his ‘foremost’ missionJuly 6th, 2010 - 1:53 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, July 6 (ANI): NASA Administrator Charles Bolden has said that his ‘foremost’ mission as the head of America’s space exploration agency is to improve relations with the Muslim world.
According to Fox News, Bolden said in an interview with Al Jazeera, that although international diplomacy would seem well outside NASA’s orbit, but strengthening those ties was among the top tasks President Obama has assigned him. He said better interaction with the Muslim world would ultimately advance space travel.
“When I became the NASA administrator, he charged me with three things. Firstly he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, secondly, to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science … and math and engineering,” Bolden said.
During the interview, he described space travel as an international collaboration of which Muslim nations must be a part.
“It is a matter of trying to reach out and get the best of all worlds, if you will, and there is much to be gained by drawing in the contributions that are possible from the Muslim (nations),” he added.
Holding the International Space Station as a model, he praised Russia and China for their contribution there.
He further assured that United States will not travel beyond low-Earth orbit on its own, and that no country is going to make it to Mars without international help.
Earlier, this year, Bolden had faced criticism for overseeing the cancellation of the agency’s Constellation program, which was building new rockets and spaceships capable of returning astronauts to the moon.
Bolden, however, stressing the importance of international cooperation in future missions said that the moon, Mars and asteroids are still planned destinations for NASA. (ANI)
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