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This news may come as a surprise to some, and provides perhaps the basis for a small amount of optimism. The relationship between Russia and the United States in the space arena remains as strong as ever, despite occasional disputes, said the director of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Jim Bridenstine, in a speech at the Canadian Aerospace Summit.

"Sometimes terrestrially Russia and the United States don't get along so well," Bridenstine said on Wednesday. "We have all kinds of terrestrial disputes, but when it comes to space exploration, when it comes to discovery, when it comes to science and the development of space, the relationship between Roscosmos and NASA is as strong as it has ever been."

Bridenstine also stated that NASA wants to maintain this strong relationship with Roscosmos.

On December 3, NASA said it planned to launch a new mission to the International Space Station (ISS) in collaboration with Roscosmos on the Russian Soyuz rocket, Bridenstine said.

International partnerships are very important in fulfilling space missions like ISS, Bridenstine completed.

Astronaut training for the ISS has begun, the media reported earlier in the day. Russian Oleg Kononeko, Canadian David Saint-Jacques and American Anne McClain are part of the training.

Elsewhere with NASA, while researching Antarctic glaciers, the agency found an enormous iceberg three times the size of Manhattan. The single piece of ice has an area of 66 square nautical miles or 87 square miles.

According to the agency, the expanse of ice broke off from the Pine Island Glacier in late October and was spotted by satellites. However, it has already started melting and splitting into smaller icebergs.

The object was discovered soon after NASA released videos showing two "tabular icebergs" that had strangely even shapes.

The massive icebergs broke off from the Pine Island Glacier in 2013, 2015, 2017, and now this year, while previously such incidents happened only once every six years.