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Shenzhou-11 crew awarded with medals

Updated: Jan 20,2017 8:10 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China on Jan 20 held a ceremony to honor the two astronauts of the Shenzhou-11 spaceflight mission for their outstanding contributions to the country’s space endeavors.

Jing Haipeng, crew commander and a third-time space traveler, was honored a first-class aerospace achievement medal, and Chen Dong, a first-time space traveler, was conferred a third-class medal and the honorary title “heroic astronaut.”

Xu Qiliang, vice chairman of the Central Military Commission, called for learning from the astronauts’ devotion to the motherland and their courage to overcome hardships.

Launched on Oct 17 last year, Shenzhou-11 docked two days later with China’s space lab Tiangong-2, where the two astronauts lived for 30 days, the longest time Chinese astronauts spent in space.

The Shenzhou-11 mission is part of China’s ambitious plan to build a permanent manned space station.