On Friday, December 28th, a Cyclone-3 rocket with six satellites was launched from the Plesetsk cosmodrome (the Arkhangelsk Region on the White Sea), the press service of the Space Forces of Russia (KVR) reported. "The launch was made by combat duties of the Space Forces," the press service officials noted. Three Kosmos communication satellites (Nos 2384, 2385 and 2386) are to be put into different orbits in the interests of the Russian Defence Ministry, while the three other satellites - of the Gonets type - were made on order of Rosaviakosmos, the KVR specialists specified. According to the command point of the Space Forces of the Russian Federation, the satellites are being put into orbit, after the launch of the rocket, according to the set sequence diagram. Separation of them from the booster-rocket will take place outside the zone of radiovisibility. The Cyclone-3 booster-rocket is used for launching automatic space apparatuses for scientific, applied, commercial and military purposes into circular and elliptic orbits with altitude ranges of 150-10,000 kilometres from the surface of Earth. Up to six space objects can be simultaneously put into orbit, the officials of the press service of the Space Forces of Russia noted. Today's start from the Plesetsk cosmodrome is the 120th for the Cyclone-3 booster-rocket, and 113 of them were successful. The first launch of this rocket was carried out on June 24, 1977. Since July 1992 Cyclone-3 launches have been accompanied with environmentally friendly measures, the KVR press service emphasized.
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Eyewitnesses said that explosions could be heard in the centre of Kyiv. Smoke was seen rising above Zhuliany Airport (Kyiv International Airport)