China could claim territory on moon if it wins new ‘space race’: NASA chief

Earthrise, taken on December 24, 1968, by Apollo 8 astronaut William Anders. [Photo: Wikimedia]

The head of NASA has said that China could claim the moon as its own territory if it beats the US in the race to the lunar surface.

United States is in a new space race with China and warned that a Chinese win could result in the country claiming to own vast swaths of the moon, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) top administrator said.

In an interview with Politico, published Sunday, NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said Chinese military expansion in the South China Sea was an indicator of what might happen on the moon.

The Business Insider report quoting Nelson said “It is a fact: we’re in a space race. And it is true that we better watch out that they don’t get to a place on the moon under the guise of scientific research. And it is not beyond the realm of possibility that they say, ‘Keep out, we’re here, this is our territory.’

“If you doubt that, look at what they did with the Spratly Islands,” Nelson said.

The aerial photographs which recently appeared in news show new military installations on the Spratly Islands, a disputed archipelago in the South China Sea.

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