Monday, October 6, 2008

Lift-off For China

Lift-off For China Space Mission
China has launched its third manned space mission - which is to feature the country's first spacewalk. The Shenzhou VII capsule soared into orbit atop a Long-March II-F rocket from the Jiuquan spaceport in Gansu province in the northwest of China. The 70-hour flight will include a spacewalk undertaken by 42-year-old fighter pilot Zhai Zhigang. Mr Zhai is joined on the mission by two other "yuhangyuan" (astronauts) - Liu Boming and Jing Haipeng.The rocket lit up the darkness as it blasted off from Jiuquan at 2110 Beijing Time (1310 GMT). China's president Hu Jintao met the three astronauts before the lift-off, wishing them success on the nation's riskiest space mission yet.

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