The White House said on Thursday, June 22, that India has decided to join the Artemis Accords.  NASA and ISRO have agreed to a joint mission to the International Space Station in 2024.

“On space, we will be able to announce that India is signing the Artemis Accords, which advance a common vision for space exploration for the benefit of all humankind,” a senior White House administration official said.

So, what are the Artemis Accords? Here is all you need to know about them:

This is a US-led, non-binding multilateral arrangement focusing on efforts to return humans to the Moon by 2025.

The ultimate goal of the Accords is to expand the scope of space exploration to Mars and beyond.

According to NASA, “The purpose of these Accords is to establish a common vision via a practical set of principles, guidelines, and best practices to enhance the governance of the civil exploration and use of outer space with the intention of advancing the Artemis Programme.”

They are intended to set up principles and guidelines to adhere to while carrying out activities in outer space.

These guidelines are made keeping in mind the goal of promoting sustainable and beneficial use of space for all humankind.

These guidelines apply to civil space activities conducted by the civil space agencies of each signatory country.

“These activities may take place on Moon, Mars, comets, and asteroids, including their surfaces and subsurfaces, as well as in the orbit of the moon or Mars in the Lagrangian points for Earth-Moon system, and in transit between these celestial bodies and locations,” NASA said.