Three Chinese astronauts are back safely on earth, after an historic space mission. The capsule landed in the steppes of Inner Mongolia after a weekend circling the earth.
The Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao had followed its journey at mission control. He said
“the complete success of the mission was a great stride forward for China’s space technology”.
Millions of ordinary people watched the exploits around-the-clock live on television, including the first spacewalk by a Chinese crew. China now joins the club of three space powers, alongside the USA and Russia.
The astronauts have now been put into quarantine for at least two weeks, although the medics said they were in good health.
The short space walk was seen as key to China’s ambitious space plans: a space laboratory, then a space station, and then putting a man on the moon.