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Mission to Mir

Moscow - A Russian rocket with three cosmonauts aboard blasted off from a snowy launch pad in Kazakhstan yesterday, heading for the Mir orbiting space station 200 miles above Earth. If all goes according to plan, the spaceship will dock tomorrow with the Mir for a crew change. The current Mir crew will return to Earth on 15 January after 200 days in space. Two members of the new crew will stay on the station until 4 July; the third will try to stay on the Mir for a record 427 days.