Turkey unveiled its national space program, a roadmap based on realistic and competitive goals, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said last week. The program set 10 targets, including sending a Turkish citizen to space with a scientific mission in 2023, without detailing it. Erdogan said nearly USD 300 m had been provided for 56 projects covering satellite, space, launching systems, and space equipment in the last 18 years, a paltry amount compared to space programs in other countries. The Western media, as well as reactions form the opposition, were decidedly incredulous. The French Le Figaro newspaper quoted Isabella’s space policy expert at French National Research Center: “This is a way to gain visibility at the regional and international levels,” she said, adding that if successful, Turkey’s National Space Program would cause the West to scream.

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