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Deputy Prime Minister Spying on Slackers at Vostochny Cosmodrome

Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin has installed cameras at the construction site of Russia's new cosmodrome so that he can personally pick out "slackers" responsible for the increasing delays.

"I had cameras installed at the cosmodrome last week," Rogozin said Monday during a visit to the Vostochny Cosmodrome. "I even upload the images on social media networks. Slackers who are not doing anything at work should know that I am watching them."

Rogozin, who is charged with managing the space and defense industries, published one of the photos on his Twitter account last week. No workers can be seen on the construction site, which is in the far eastern Amur region.

Five thousand workers are employed at the site at present, but Rogozin said the number needs to be at least tripled, RIA Novosti reported.

He expressed hope that the project will be given top priority now that the Sochi Winter Olympics are over.


A picture posted on Rogozin's Twitter account showing that he receives video footage of the construction site.

This is not the first time that Rogozin has got personally involved with the construction efforts at the Vostochny Cosmodrome.

In October 2013, Rogozin fired Roscosmos head Vladimir Popovkin and replaced him with former Deputy Defense Minister Oleg Ostapenko, later explaining that the decision was connected with construction delays at the Vostochny Cosmodrome.

In December, it was announced that construction at the cosmodrome was behind schedule by a few months. Spetsstroi, the company responsible for the project, said that the delays were caused by discrepancies in documentation. This was preceded by a scandal in July in which police found five construction workers smoking marijuana. They were later fired.

The project began in 2012, with the first launch scheduled for mid-2015. By 2018 the facility will launch its first manned rocket, assuming that there are no further delays. It is being built with Russia's new Angara family of rockets in mind.

Currently, Russia's manned space program is completely dependent on the Soviet-era Baikonur Cosmodrome, which is in northern Kazakhstan and leased by Russia for $115 million a year. There have been a series of spats over the frequency and environmental impact of Russian launches between the Kazakh and Russian governments.

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