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Belarus to launch its second satellite in 2009

RIA Novosti

13/11/2007 15:41 MINSK, November 13 (RIA Novosti) - Belarus plans to launch its second satellite in 2009, the National Academy of Sciences said on Tuesday.

Pyotr Vityaz, the first deputy chairman of the academy's presidium, said the Belka-2 satellite would be launched by a Russian carrier rocket.

Belarus launched its first satellite, Belka, in July 2006. However, a Dnepr rocket carrying the Belarusian satellite, along with several international satellites, crashed shortly after liftoff from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan, due to a first stage engine shutdown.

Belka was the name of a Soviet dog, who, along with her companion, Strelka, was the first creature to go into orbit and return alive, making her trip in August 1960.

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