The talk about accelerating deployment of the Glonass system may become reality this year. After all, the president ordered the system to be completed in 2008.
According to Andrey Kozlov, the director of the Reshetnev Applied Mechanics NPO, which produces the spacecraft, five Glonass satellites will be launched this year. Three of them will be launched by a Proton launcher in December, as planned. Two additional satellites have not been in the schedule, so it is not clear when this launch might take place and what launcher will be used. A possibility of using a Soyuz launcher with the Fregat booster stage has been mentioned, but this combination has never been used for Glonass launches, so there are reasons to be skeptical.