History, traditions

Russia celebrates Cosmonaut's Day

Today, Russia celebrates Cosmonaut's Day.

This holiday has been established by the decree of the USSR's Supreme Council on April 9th, 1962 to commemorate the first man in space. Precisely 43 years ago, on April 12th 1961, Yuri Gagarin has been the first man to travel to space in the history of humankind. His flight lasted for 108 minutes. Gagarin gave rise to the new era of space development.

98 Soviet and Russian cosmonauts have traveled to space after Gagarin.

Present crew of the International space station celebrates this professional holiday in a “working stand-by mode”, reported Mission Control Center to RIA “Novosti”.

Head of Gagarin's training center for cosmonauts, General-Major Vasily Tsibliev awarded Valentina Tereshklova, the first woman to ever travel to space, along with Valery Bikovsky, Vladimir Shatalov, Boris Volinov and Victor Gorbatko.

Today, majority of Russians consider that Russia continues to hold its leading position in cosmonautics. According to the recent public opinion polls, conducted by “ROMIR-Monitoring” and “Public Opinion Fund”, the public slowly starts to heal the psychological trauma after losing “Mir” space station in March of 2001.

Sociologists claim that after the station’s destruction, those who considered Russia as an ultimate leader in space development has risen by 8-10% reaching 52%, reports Newsru.

Based on April's poll conducted by the Public Opinion Fund, out of 1500 respondents, 82% of Russians are certain that the title of “Space power” is of utmost importance for the country.

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