Publication: Monitor Volume: 3 Issue: 219

Ukraine’s first astronaut, Leonid Kadeniuk, yesterday spent his first day in orbit aboard the U.S. space shuttle Columbia. The crew also includes four Americans and one Japanese. Kadeniuk, a colonel in the Ukrainian air force, is responsible for conducting biological and botanical experiments during the 16-day flight. Ukrainian president Leonid Kuchma, currently on a visit to the U.S., met with Kadeniuk at Cape Canaveral just before the blastoff and witnessed the event. Kuchma did this with a professional eye, recalling that he had witnessed many Soviet-era launches at Baikonur in his former capacity as director-general of the Dnipropetrovsk ballistic missile plant Yuzhmash (today Pivdenmash).

Kadeniuk’s flight is partly the result of a U.S.-Ukrainian agreement on joint space exploration, signed in 1994 by Kuchma and President Bill Clinton, and a follow-up agreement between the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Space Agency of Ukraine (NSAU). Kuchma and NSAU director Oleksandr Nehoda are scheduled to discuss additional joint space exploration programs during their U.S. visit. (Western agencies, DINAU, Eastern Economist Daily, October 20)

Karabakh Feels Undercut by Armenian President.