The United States said that it will shoot down a dying U.S spy satellite earlier this week, and on Friday government officials promised to compensate other nations for any debris that lands in their territory.

Whether the engagement succeeds or fails, the U.S. is prepared to offer assistance to governments to mitigate the consequences of any satellite debris impacts on their territory, Ambassador Christina Rocca told the Conference on Disarmament.

The satellite is carrying more than 1,000 pounds (454 kg) of hydrazine fuel, and could release much of it as a toxic gas, according to US officials.

The decision to attempt a shootdown was disclosed by the Pentagon on Thursday.

The US could shoot down the satellite later next week, shortly after the space shuttle Atlantis returns from its current voyage at midweek. Officials want the Atlantis to be home to avoid the risk of being hit with satellite debris.

Rocca told the state forum that the timing of the strike would be chosen to maximize the chance of hitting the fuel tank and to ensure that the resulting debris will re-enter quickly and thus not pose a danger to satellites and peaceful space operations.