This Friday, Russia launched a rocket Soyuz MS-21 heading to the International Space Station (ISS, for its acronym in English. The ship is manned exclusively by three Russian astronauts, a detail not seen since 2008. The launch occurs at a time of strong tensions between Moscow and Western countries due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The crew —made up of its commander Oleg Artemiev, Denis Matveyev and Sergei Korsakov— took off at 3:55 p.m. GMT (10:55 a.m. local time) and will fly three hours to the ISS where she will be received by a team of two Russians, four Americans and one German.

The launch of the spacecraft, named by the Russian space agency Roscosmos in honor of Sergei Korolyov, considered the father of Soviet cosmonautics and the architect of the most notable milestones in the history of the exploration of the cosmos, was carried out from the Russian cosmodrome of Baikonur, in the Kazakh steppe.

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