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Chinese Premier meets staff of first space lab module Tiangong-1

(Xinhua)

12:40, October 01, 2011

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (R Front) meets with representatives of the staff members working for the country's first space lab module Tiangong-1, or "Heavenly Palace-1", in Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, northwest China's Gansu Province, Sept. 30, 2011. (Xinhua/Zhang Duo)

JIUQUAN, Sept. 30 (Xinhua) -- Premier Wen Jiabao on Friday morning met with representatives of the staff members working for the country's first space lab module Tiangong-1, or "Heavenly Palace-1."

The unmanned module was successfully launched on Thursday evening from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center.

Tiangong-1, which is scheduled to dock with the Shenzhou-8 spacecraft later this year, will pave the way for building China's first space station.

Wen was at the launch center Thursday and watched the launch process with He Guoqiang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee.

Wen shook hands and took pictures with the staff at the launch center and the representatives from other scientific institutes that worked for the research and testing of the module.

Wen said the launch of the module is a critical step for China to develop the space docking technology and a milestone of the country's manned space program.

It is also an achievement of China toward the building of an innovative country, Wen said.

He called on the staff members to make further efforts for the country's space program and the nation's rejuvenation.

"Your efforts and contributions will be remembered," he said.

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