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China made the announcement that astronauts from UN members can visit and perform research projects at the Tiengong (sky palace) Space Station, which it built in Earth orbit.

Vang Vinbin, a spokesman for the foreign ministry, said that so far, nine projects from 23 organizations in 17 nations have been chosen to be carried out at the station.

By the end of this year, the tests and research projects that will be carried out under the supervision of the UN Office of Outer Space Relations are scheduled to begin, according to spokesperson Vang. Vang underlined that China is prepared for international collaboration with all nations that adhere to the principle of the peaceful use of space. He added that foreign astronauts could visit the Chinese Space Station and work with Chinese astronauts to help solve cosmic mysteries and develop humanity’s future vision.

Since the United States opposes international cooperation in space exploration and prevents China from collaborating in the International Space Station (ISS) program, China is trying to build its own space station. The completed Tiengong station will be approximately the same size as Russia’s now-defunct Mir Space Station and will include a core module, two laboratory modules, and a space telescope.

On April 29, 2021, the Tienhi (celestial harmony) core module of the station was launched into space.

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