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Ethiopia launched its first satellite into space on Friday, as more sub-Saharan African nations strive to develop space programs to advance their development goals and encourage scientific innovation.
Before dawn on Friday, senior officials and citizens gathered at the Entoto Observatory and Research Centre just north of the capital Addis Ababa to watch a live broadcast of the satellite's launch from a space station in China.
"This will be a foundation for our historic journey to prosperity," deputy prime minister Demeke Mekonnen said in a speech at the launch event broadcast on state television.
The satellite was designed by Chinese and Ethiopian engineers and the Chinese government paid about $6 million of the more than $7 million manufacturing costs, Solomon Belay, director general of the Ethiopian Space Science and Technology Institute, told Reuters.
"Space is food, space is job creation, a tool for technology...sovereignty, to reduce poverty, everything for Ethiopian to achieve universal and sustainable development," he said.
The satellite will be used for weather forecast and crop monitoring, officials said.
The African Union adopted a policy on African space development in 2017 and declared that space science and technology could advance economic progress and natural resource management on the continent.
Falcon Eye 1 will be the fourth reconnaissance satellite launched by the UAE, bringing the total number to ten satellites in orbit. The UAE plans to have 12 satellites in orbit by 2020.
The craft launched a repeat of the docking manoeuvres after the failure of the first attempt, which had been scheduled to take place at 0530 GMT, the agencies said.
Elon Musk-run SpaceX has launched 60 "Starlink" satellites into low-Earth orbit from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida that will bring cheaper Internet access to the world.
The Chinese city, Shenzhen has banned consumption of dogs and cats as part of a clampdown on the wildlife trade since the emergence of the novel coronavirus.
The Ministry said a 62-year old Asian expat and a 78-year old GCC national who tested positive for COVID-19 died due to complications related to chronic diseases. This brings death toll to eight.
An Australian tourist who was infected with the new coronavirus (Covid-19) thanked the UAE health sector for the care and treatment she received and helped her recover from the virus. She reportedly landed at Dubai Airport as a transit passenger on her way from Britain to Australia.