US, China consulted on safety as their crafts headed to Mars

BEIJING (AP) — As their respective spacecrafts headed to Mars, China and the U.S. held consultations earlier this year in a somewhat unusual series of exchanges between the rivals.

China’s National Space Agency confirmed the working-level meetings and communications with NASA from January to March “to ensure the flight safety” of their crafts.

U.S. law bans almost all contacts between NASA and China over concerns about technology theft and the secretive, military-backed nature of China’s space program.

Exceptions can be made if NASA can ensure information is safeguarded.

NASA’s Perseverance rover is exploring Mars after landing there in February.

China’s Tianwen-1 is orbiting Mars in preparation for a landing in May or June.

A U.A.E. craft is orbiting the planet as well.

Categories: Associated Press, News, World

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