BAIKONUR, /Kazakhstan/, December 7. /TASS/. Russia’s state commission has approved the crew of a manned Soyuz MS-20 spacecraft that will launch from the Baikonur spaceport in Kazakhstan to the International Space Station (ISS) on December 8, the State Space Corporation Roscosmos announced on Tuesday.
"The state commission has approved the basic and back-up crews of the Soyuz MS-20 manned spacecraft. It has also confirmed the readiness of a Soyuz-2 carrier rocket and the ground infrastructure for the launch on December 8," Roscosmos said on its Telegram channel.
The basic crew is made up of Roscosmos cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin, Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa and his business assistant Yozo Hirano. The back-up crew comprises Roscosmos cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov and Japan’s Shun Ogiso.
The launch of the Soyuz MS-20 manned spacecraft with two space tourists to the International Space Station is scheduled for December 8. The space travelers will spend 12 days in orbit. Roscosmos cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin will be the commander of the Soyuz MS-20 spacecraft.
On November 17, Russia’s world-renowned TASS news agency and the State Space Corporation Roscosmos signed a memorandum of cooperation, which stipulates establishing a TASS news office aboard the ISS. Under the agreement, Roscosmos cosmonaut, Hero of Russia Alexander Misurkin will be the first TASS correspondent in space. He will report on the space station’s daily routine. His reports will be available to the agency’s readership from TASS news resources and his photo and video contributions will be uploaded to the agency’s website and official pages on social media.