First Czech cosmonaut receives Russian Order of Merit


The first and only Czechoslovak cosmonaut, Vladimír Remek, has been awarded the Russian Order of Merit for the exploration of space on the 50th anniversary of the first manned spaceflight. Mr Remek, now an MEP for the Communist Party, was in Moscow for the ceremony, along with other Russian and foreign cosmonauts, and received the award from Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. Mr Remek was a military fighter pilot for the Czechoslovak Army in the 1970s, and spent nearly eight days on the Soviet Soyuz 28 mission in March of 1978. He was also the first astronaut from a country other than the US or the USSR.