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Belarus to build 'best spacecraft' - Lukashenko

RIA Novosti

16:39 16/12/2011 MOSCOW, December 16 (RIA Novosti) - Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko said on Friday the former Soviet republc would build the best spaceship the world has ever seen.

Lukashenko, once famoulsy dubbed “Europe’s last dictator” by the United States over the country’s poor human rights record, said he had spoken with the country's leading scientists on the “construction of our own spacecraft.”

“We agreed: the craft will be the best in the world,” Lukashenko told an energy conference in Minsk.

“Who would have thought in the 1990s that we’d be making a spacecraft?” the 57-year-old former collective farm boss asked.

On Wednesday, Belarus signed an agreement with Russia on space cooperation and announced plans to launch its BelKa-2 satellite early next year. The first BelKa crashed on liftoff in 2006.

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