ASTANA, September 12. /TASS/. Kazakhstan will develop cooperation with Russia in the space sector, Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev said during a meeting with crew of Soyuz TMA-16M on Saturday.
"Any state expenses on space are paying back. The entire word is competing, and Russia is a leader. As a counterpart, an ally, a close neighbour, jointly with Russia we shall develop the space authority and the work in space," he told a news conference devoted to landing of the space crew.
"Among the 200 countries in the world only a few a lucky to send their cosmonauts to the space," the president said. "Our first cosmonaut is Tokhtar Aubakirov, the second - Talgat Musabayev and now the third one is Aidyn Aimbetov."
While commenting on the Kazakh cosmonaut’s flight as a member of the 45th mission to the International Space Station (ISS), the president said he "not only made a flight, but fulfilled certain scientific orders."
Earlier, the republic’s space authority, Kazkosmos, said the country’s cosmonaut was to carry out ten experiments in the space. Besides, at the order from the national food institute the Kazakh cosmonaut made testing of eight national dishes to study their influence on the state of a human being under the extreme conditions.
The Soyuz TMA-16M spacecraft blasted off from the Baikonur space site in Kazakhstan at 22:43 on March 27 and docked with the ISS six hours later. It brought to the ISS Padalka, Korniyenko and Kelly. The latter two will stay in orbit till the spring of 2016 as members of the main mission. Their seats inside the Soyuz have been taken by Aimbetov and Mogensen, who had arrived a week earlier on board the Soyuz TMA-18M.
The ISS now has a crew of six: Russia’s Mikhail Korniyenko, Oleg Kononenko and Sergey Volkov, the United States’ Scott Kelly and Kjell Lindgren and Japan’s Kimiya Yui.