Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks with SpaceX CEO Elon Musk
The Independent

Elon Musk has joked that he will send “space dragons with ‘lasers’” to Ukraine.

The Tesla and SpaceX boss made the remark after a satirical website, The Babylon Bee, shared an article stating that Musk would send flame-throwing electric tanks to Ukraine.

Musk responded to the satirical piece with: “Pshaw, how pedestrian! I was thinking more … space dragons with ‘lasers’”.

Although he’s not sending flame-throwing tanks or space dragons (yet), Musk has been thanked by the Ukrainian president for setting up the Starlink satellite internet service in the wake of the Russian invasion.

Starlink is a space-based system of some 2,000 satellites that SpaceX has been building for years to bring internet access to underserved areas of the world, with the company referring to its dishes as terminals.

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Several large cities in Ukraine were left without internet or phone connection after Russian attacks, The Independent reports.

On Saturday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said he spoke with Musk, and said more satellites would be made available for Ukrainians.

He tweeted: “Talked to @elonmusk. I’m grateful to him for supporting Ukraine with words and deeds. Next week we will receive another batch of Starlink systems for destroyed cities. Discussed possible space projects. But I’ll talk about this after the war.”

Musk has also mocked Russia after state space agency boss Dmitry Rogozin said the country would stop providing rocket engines to the United States in response to sanctions.

Rogozin suggested Americans can instead go to space on “broomsticks”. Musk posted a screenshot of an article with Rogozin’s quote, and tweeted “American broomstick” under a video of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launching 47 Starlink satellites to orbit.

Musk has also said Starlink will not block Russian news sources “unless at gunpoint”.

It comes as the company claims it was asked by some governments, but not Ukraine, to block Russian news sources.

He tweeted: “Sorry to be a free speech absolutist.”

The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.

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