State Dept. alarmed about Russian satellite's ‘abnormal behavior’

State Dept. alarmed about Russian satellite's ‘abnormal behavior’
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U.S. officials are raising concerns about the “very abnormal behavior” of a Russian satellite, suggesting that it could pose a threat to American satellites.

ABC News reported that Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance Yleem D.S. Poblete said that the satellite is showing behavior “inconsistent with anything seen before from" similar satellites launched by Russia.

"We don't know for certain what it is, and there is no way to verify it," Poblete said during the Conference on Disarmament in Switzerland, suggesting that it could be a weapon, according to the network.

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The official was speaking of the U.S.'s “serious concerns” about Russian efforts to place weapons in space, such anti-satellite devices that could target U.S. satellites, ABC News said.

Russia has denied that the satellite is a weapon. One senior Russian diplomat told Reuters that the claims are "the same unfounded, slanderous accusations based on suspicions, on suppositions and so on."

President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff urges GOP colleagues to share private concerns about Trump publicly US-China trade talks draw criticism for lack of women in pictures Overnight Defense: Trump to leave 200 troops in Syria | Trump, Kim plan one-on-one meeting | Pentagon asks DHS to justify moving funds for border wall MORE earlier this year ordered the creation of the “Space Force,” a sixth branch of the military dedicated to space. Creating such a branch requires congressional approval.

Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PencePence going to Colombia to demand Maduro step down Grenell: Push to decriminalize homosexuality 'wildly supported' by both parties Marc Short to return to White House as Pence’s chief of staff MORE and Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisOvernight Defense: Trump to leave 200 troops in Syria | Trump, Kim plan one-on-one meeting | Pentagon asks DHS to justify moving funds for border wall Trump to leave 200 US troops in Syria as 'peacekeeping' force Acting Defense chief calls Graham an 'ally' after tense exchange MORE last week discussed plans for creating the Space Force, including the establishment a space combatant command.