The message read:
Russia learned with deep sorrow of the Columbia tragedy and the death of its crew.
We deeply sympathise with your country in this hard time. We understand the grief being felt by the families of the killed astronauts. These brave people gave their lives exploring the dangerous place that space is in the name of peace, science and the progress of civilisation. We will always remember them.
I would like to convey my condolences, sympathy and support to the friendly American people and, first of all, to the families of the killed astronauts.”