The agency planned to test out new equipment and technology on a Russian-funded space voyage — however, three planned trips to the Moon have been "discontinued" due to the ongoing and costly invasion of Ukraine.
Heads of the space agency have also suspended their collaboration with the Kremlin on an ET-hunting ExoMars operation they had scheduled. The mission planned on landing a rover on Mars' surface to drill the soil and search for signs of alien life.
A spokesperson for the space agency announced the scrapped missions. "As with ExoMars, the Russian aggression against Ukraine and the resulting sanctions put in place represent a fundamental change of circumstances and make it impossible for ESA to implement the planned lunar cooperation," the statement read.
"As an inter-governmental organization mandated to develop and implement space programs in full respect with European values, we deeply deplore the human casualties and tragic consequences of the aggression towards Ukraine," it continued. "While recognizing the impact on scientific exploration of space ESA is fully aligned with the sanctions imposed on Russia by its member states."
Putin has been fascinated with the concept of being the first of the world's leaders to make contact with extraterrestrial life, but his goals have come to a halt due to the war in Ukraine. The battle is going worse for Russia than anyone predicted.
Numbers of Russian bodies have been piling up as the conflict continues with the invading nation recently losing its flagship vessel.
Scientists believed that confirmation of life could have come within weeks of the rover landing on Mars' surface — but with the mission being delayed indefinitely, it's unlikely the Russian funding will ever come through.