Russia will end its cooperation on the International Space Station (ISS) and cease working with NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) due to western sanctions against the country.

Dmitry Rogozin, head of Russian space agency Roscosmos, made the announcement on Twitter on Saturday morning as he slammed sanctions he said were designed to "kill" the Russian economy.

The ISS is not owned by single nation but is instead operated through a "co-operative program" involving the U.S., Europe, Russia, Canada and Japan. It is the largest manmade structure ever put into space.

Tweeting in Russia, Rogozin wrote: "Sanctions from the U.S., Canada, the European Union and Japan are aimed at blocking financial, economic and production activities of our high-tech enterprises."

"The purpose of the sanctions is to kill the Russian economy, plunge our people into despair and hunger, and bring our country to its knees. It is clear that they will not be able to do this, but the intentions are clear," he said.

"That is why I believe that the restoration of normal relations between partners in the International Space Station and other joint projects is possible only with the complete and unconditional lifting of illegal sanctions," Rogozin went on.

"Specific proposals of Roscosmos on the timing of the completion of cooperation within the framework of he ISS with the space agencies of the United States, Canada, the European Union and Japan will be reported to the leadership of our country in the near future," he wrote.

The U.S. and its allies have imposed strict sanctions on Russia since its invasion of neighboring Ukraine began on February 24. Those sanctions have included cutting Russia off from the SWIFT international payments system, a U.S. ban on Russian energy imports, and denying the Central Bank of Russia access to around $300 billion in forex and gold reserves.

In a long Twitter thread on Saturday, Rogozin also shared letters he had received from the heads of the other space agencies involved in the running of ISS, including NASA and the ESA.

Rogozin had written to the agencies about the imposition of sanctions, with ESA Director General Josef Aschbacher writing that he would forward Rogozin's letter to ESA's member states.

The Roscosmos director criticized having to wait for responses from all the European governments that are party to the ESA, writing that by the time they had replied "the ISS will die by its own death."

Russia is responsible for critical parts of the ISS's propulsion controls that keep the station in orbit of the Earth and the station originally began as a partnership between the U.S. and Russia.

Rogozin had previously threatened to end Russian cooperation with the international space agencies and suggested that without Russia, the ISS could fall to Earth. The Roscosmos director is reportedly known for provocative statements.

Newsweek has asked NASA and the ESA for comment.

Update 04/02/22 11.00a.m. E.T.: This article was updated to include more information.

In this handout image provided by the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA, the International Space Station and the docked space shuttle Endeavour orbit Earth during Endeavour's final sortie on May 23, 2011 in Space. Russia will end its cooperation on ISS due to sanctions against the country.Paolo Nespoli - ESA/NASA/Getty Images