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US hails China's 2nd manned space mission
Updated: 2005-10-13 07:53

The United States congratulated China on launching its second manned space mission and welcomed any effort to make peaceful use of space.

"We obviously congratulate China on the successful launch of its second manned space mission," Deputy State Department spokesman Adam Ereli said.

US hails China's 2nd manned space mission
China's second manned spacecraft Shenzhou VI blasts off into the sky Wednesday morning October 12, 2005. The craft, carrying astronauts Fei Junlong and Nie Haisheng, is expected to orbit the Earth for five days. [Xinhua]

"Furthermore we would applaud China and its success as only the third country to launch people into space.

"Our view is that the peaceful use of space is something that is appropriate and we welcome China's developments in this area."

Separately, the head of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration also hailed China's launch of its second manned space mission, saying it reaffirmed the country's place among the space "elite".

"China, once again, has demonstrated that it is among the elite number of countries capable of human space flight," NASA Administrator Michael Griffin said in a brief statement.

"We wish them well on their mission, and we look forward to the safe return of their astronauts."

China launched the spacecraft, Shenzhou VI, with two astronauts aboard, from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center at 9:00 am (0100 GMT) Wednesday for a five-day mission.

The flight came just two years after the country's first manned space flight which carried one astronaut.

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