MOSCOW — Russia has launched its inaugural rocket from another cosmodrome, a day after a technical glitch foiled the much-publicised event and led to President Vladimir Putin criticising the program’s officials.
The unmanned Soyuz-2.1A rocket carrying three satellites roared off into a clear blue sky from the launch pad at the Vostochny cosmodrome in the remote Amur Region near China’s border at 5:01am Moscow time, state television showed.
The satellites separated from the rocket’s third stage about nine minutes into the flight, heading to their designated orbits, Russian media quoted officials from the space agency Roscosmos as saying.
The launch was called off less than two minutes before the lift-off on Wednesday, upsetting President Vladimir Putin, who had flown thousands of kilometres to watch what the media and officials touted as an historic event.
“I want to congratulate you. There is something to be proud of,” local media quoted Mr Putin telling cosmodrome workers after watching Thursday’s launch at Vostochny.
“In principle, we could have held the launch yesterday, but the equipment overdid its job and stopped the launch. This is a normal thing.”
The Vostochny spaceport, the first civilian rocket launch site on Russian territory, is intended to phase out the nation’s reliance on the Baikonur cosmodrome it leases from Kazakhstan at a cost of nearly $151 million a year.
Delays and corruption have blighted work on the cosmodrome, which Mr Putin has hailed as Russia’s biggest current building project, with a budget of between $6 and $8 billion.
PM congratulates Nepali national cricket team
KATHMANDU— Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has congratulated Nepali national cricket team for being able to clinch the International T20 series.
PM Oli in a tweet extended best wishes and congratulations saying he was very happy to know Nepal’s win over the UAE by 14 runs in the third match of the series.
Winning T20 series is another landmark success for Nepali cricket, he said, adding, “It is big achievement for Nepal’s cricket. I would like to heartily congratulate entire members of Nepali cricket squad”.