On Friday leading specialist of Rosaviakosmos Vitaly Semenov announced at a meeting with journalists that the project of a manned flight to Mars was being developed in Russia together with American specialists.
According to the scientist, the project stipulated the flight of a group of 6 cosmonauts in 2014-2015. Vitaly Semenov stressed that "presently preliminary consideration of the project was being carried out." According to the scientist, preparation for the flight including construction of the spacecraft and the flight itself will require expenditures in the amount of approximately USD 20 billion, one third of which will be financed by Russia.
Vitaly Semenov stated that "certainly, it would be an international project and already now countries of the European Space Agency would like to join it. This week we started corresponding negotiations with them on this matter." The scientists indicated that the development of the first stage of the project "was reliably financed by American and Russian authorities."