Emirati astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi and Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
Syed Shayaan Bakht, Staff Reporter
UAE President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan phoned Emirati astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi ahead of his historic mission to the International Space Station on Feb.27 from Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed was checking on him before he sets out on his journey to the International Space Station, which is the longest space mission in the history of the Arabs.
Sheikh Mohamed wished to Allah that Al Neyadi succeed in his space mission and return home safe to raise his country’s flag high in the sky.
The launch is all set to take place on Feb.27.
The live coverage will begin from 7:15am (UAE time) while the liftoff will be at 10:45am.
During the phone call, the UAE President asked Al Neyadi about his wellbeing, family, and mission?
Al Neyadi replied, “They are all doing well, Your Highness. Everything is good.
"We arrived at the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida two days ago, and our parents also arrived.
"It was a good gathering for all of us. Everyone is excited and waiting for this historic moment, Your Highness."
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said, "May God protect you wherever you may be, and may you return to us safe and sound, dear and cherished, raising the flag of your country. We are looking forward to your return, God willing."
Al Neyadi replied, "Your Highness, you are always leading us with your kindness and generosity, and you pave the way for us. There is no one happier than us about this. You lead us, and we follow you on this journey, who carried the flag of the UAE and the ‘Zayed’s Ambition’ patch. Today we are continuing this journey and god willing there will be further stages to come."
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said, "We are delighted with you and we invest in the likes of you and your brother Hazza…"
Al Neyadi said, "We are whenever you want us to be, Your Highness."
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said, "May God bless you and protect you… We put trust in you… Your noble deeds are well-known by all, from your father to your ancestors."
Al Neyadi said, "What we are striving for, Your Highness is good and honourable. As science continues to progress and develop, God willing the UAE will leave an important mark on this mission. It is the first long mission, six months, and there are many things that we will convey in the name of UAE, raising its flag, and we will enrich all of humanity with this mission…"
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said, "There is no doubt about that, Sultan. The important thing is to maintain your daily workout, so that your muscles remain strong when you return."
Al Neyadi said, "The good news, Your Highness, is that we have a mandatory daily workout of approximately two hours.
"Thanks to scientific research, it has been proven that those who exercise daily have better physical health. In fact, some have returned even stronger than they were before the trip."
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed said, "May God strengthen, bless and bring you back safely and soundly. Please give my regards to your family and your father, and God willing, we will see you soon and will be overjoyed to see you."
Al Neyadi said, "I will convey your greetings to everyone, and they will be happy to hear them. God willing, we will all wait for that moment with you and alongside you. We will reach the boundary of space and beyond, God willing, Your Highness."
Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed responded, "May God protect you, Thank you, Sultan, thank you."
Sultan Al Neyadi, the Emirati astronaut, is preparing to head to the ISS on Feb.19, on the first long-term Arab mission which will last 180 days, as part of the “Crow 6” mission, launched from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
The question was about the reason for the change in the movement of an object in space. At the beginning, Al Neyadi praised the followers’ interaction with the question, stressing that many of them answered it correctly.
Salem Humaid Al Marri, Director General, Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre said, “The UAE Astronaut Programme was launched in 2017, and this is our second mission making the UAE the 11th country globally to launch a long-duration astronaut mission to the International Space Station.
Sultan Al Neyadi’s spacewalk on Friday marked another milestone for the Emirati space programme. Sultan along with fellow International Space Station (ISS) astronaut from NASA, Stephen Bowen, carried out maintenance work of the ISS, which remains a challenge even after more than half a century of the international space programme.
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