United Arab Emirates to launch spacecraft to moon in 2024

The moon
The moon (PA Archive)
9:30am, Tue 29 Sep 2020
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The United Arab Emirates plans to send an unmanned spacecraft to the moon in 2024, a top official in the country said.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who is also the ruler of Dubai, made the announcement on Twitter.

His announcement comes after the launch of a Mars probe earlier this year by the UAE, an oil-rich nation on the Arabian Peninsula.

Sheikh Mohammed said the rover would be named Rashid, the same name of his late father, Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum.

If successful in 2024, the UAE could become the fourth nation on Earth to land a spacecraft on the moon, after the US, the Soviet Union and China.

India has tried and failed to land a spacecraft, as have Israel and Japan.

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