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The west entrance of Spaceport America. Photo: Steve Snowden/Getty Images

Virgin Galactic announced on Friday that it will finally move operations from its Mojave facilities to the New Mexico launch site Spaceport America, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: This launch site is currently the world's only commercial spaceport. Virgin plans to use the spaceport to fulfill one of its ultimate visions: carrying tourists to space for tickets that reportedly cost up to $250,000 a piece. Virgin plans to execute the move this summer now that it has completed 2 successful flights through the upper atmosphere — one of which included the first passenger carried to space aboard a commercial spacecraft.

The backdrop: Spaceport America, which cost New Mexico taxpayers $220 million, stood vacant for years as Virgin troubleshot issues with test flights. Virgin hoped to have paying passengers take space tours by 2007, but 3 technicians were killed that year by an explosion while testing a propellant system. In 2014, the company's SpaceShipTwo broke apart during a test flight, killing the co-pilot.

  • The rest of Virgin's vision: space hotels and a network of spaceports allowing supersonic travel anywhere on earth within a few hours.

Buzz: 700 people have already signed up to grab up to $250,000 tickets to be flown 50 miles from the New Mexico spaceport to the edge of space. Still, Virgin has not yet set a deadline for the first commercial flight, per the AP.

Go deeper: Inside the new global race to space

Go deeper

2 hours ago - World

Brazil begins distributing AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine

Containers carrying doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine arrive in Brazil. Photo: Maurio Pimentel/AFP via Getty Images

Brazil on Saturday began distributing the 2 million doses of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine that arrived from India Friday, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: Brazil has the third highest COVID-19 case-count in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The 2 million doses "only scratch the surface of the shortfall," Brazilian public health experts told the AP.

Sullivan speaks with Israel's national security adviser for the first time

Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben Shabbat U.S. Photo: Mazen Mahdi/Getty Images. U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan. Photo: Chandan Khanna/Getty Images

U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan spoke on the phone Saturday with his Israeli counterpart Meir Ben Shabbat, Israeli officials tell Axios.

Why it matters: This is the first contact between the Biden White House and Israeli prime minister's office. During the transition, the Biden team refrained from speaking to foreign governments.

Biden speaks to Mexican president about reversing Trump's "draconian immigration policies"

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. Ismael Rosas/Eyepix Group/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

President Biden told his Mexican counterpart, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, on a phone call Friday that he plans to reverse former President Trump’s “draconian immigration policies.”

The big picture: The Biden administration has already started repealing several of Trump’s immigration policies, including ordering a 100-day freeze on deporting many unauthorized immigrants, halting work on the southern border wall, and reversing plans to exclude undocumented people from being included in the 2020 census.