Russian Cargo Ship Launched to ISS After 2-Day Delay

An unmanned Russian cargo ship has blasted off for the International Space Station, two days after the original launch was scrubbed.

The Progress capsule is carrying 2.7 metric tons (3 U.S. tons) of food, fuel and other supplies. It entered orbit eight minutes after liftoff Tuesday from the Russian space complex in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.

The abandoned Sunday launch was intended to test a new regime for fast deliveries to the space station, docking less than four hours after launch. But Tuesday’s launch will follow a longer route, with docking scheduled for Thursday.

There are six astronauts aboard the space station – three Americans, two Russians and one from Japan.

Source: VOA news


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Yemen Conflict: US Strikes Radar Sites After Missile Attack on Ship

The US military has attacked radar sites in Yemen after a US warship in the Red Sea came under missile attack for the second time within days.

The Pentagon said initial assessments showed that three radar sites involved in the recent missile launches had been destroyed.

It said the targeted sites were on territory controlled by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels.

The Pentagon said the strikes had been authorised by President Barack Obama.

“These limited self-defence strikes were conducted to protect our personnel, our ships, and our freedom of navigation in this important maritime passageway,” Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said.

“The United States will respond to any further threat to our ships and commercial traffic, as appropriate.”

There were no details on how the strikes were carried out.

They came hours after at least one missile was fired at the USS Mason, a guided-missile destroyer, in the Red Sea off Yemen.

The Pentagon said the ship took defensive action and suffered no damage.

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On Sunday, two missiles were fired at the USS Mason from the same rebel-held territory.

Both missiles hit the water before reaching the ship, the Pentagon said.

At the time, a Houthi spokesman told the Saba news agency that it had not targeted any warships.

A Saudi-led multinational coalition, supported by the US, is carrying out an air campaign against the Houthi movement.

The UN says at least 4,125 civilians have been killed and 7,207 injured since the coalition intervened in the conflict between forces loyal to Yemen’s internationally-recognised government and those allied to the Houthis in March 2015.

Source: BBC


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4 Iranian Vessels Sped Close to a US Ship, Navy Says

Four Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessels sped close to a U.S. guided missile destroyer in international waters Tuesday in an “unsafe and unprofessional” encounter, the U.S. Navy said Wednesday.

The USS Nitze fired 10 warning flares and blew its whistles at the Iranian vessels but got no response.

The four boats came within 275 meters of the Nitze, forcing it to change course, even though oil rigs were dangerously nearby, to avoid a possible collision.

Tuesday’s incident occurred in the strategically important Strait of Hormuz.

The Navy accused Iran of harassing the warship and breaking international law.

“These sorts of unsafe and unprofessional actions can lead to escalation and miscalculation, which may necessitate additional defensive measures,” a Navy spokesman said Wednesday. “Commanding officers have an inherent obligation for self-defense.”

There has been no explanation so far from Iran.

Iran briefly held 10 U.S. sailors captive in January after they accidentally strayed into Iranian waters.

Source : VOA


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