MOSCOW (Armradio) — The flags of Armenia and Yerevan have been sent to the International Space Station on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the First Republic of Armenia and the 2,800th anniversary of Yerevan, the Armenian Embassy in Russia informs.

The sending of flags became possible thanks to Hero of Russia, cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev, who started a long expedition on March 21, 2018 as part of the crew of the Soyuz MS-08 spacecraft with NASA astronauts Andrew J. Feustel and Richard Arnold.

On board the International Space Station, they were welcomed by Anton Shkaplerov (Roskosmos, Russia), Scott Tingle (NASA, USA) and Norishige Kanai (JAXA, Japan). The initiator of the symbolic action was the St. Petersburg philanthropist Hrachya Poghosyan. The flags were handed over to cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev by Armenia’s Ambassador to Russia Vardan Toghanyan on March 2. The initiative was blessed by the head of the Russia and New Nakhichevan Diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Archbishop Yezras Nersisyan and Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II. The Russian space crew will return to Earth in September.

The cosmonauts are expected to hand over the flags to the authorities of Armenia and Yerevan during October events dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the First Republic of Armenia and the 2,800th anniversary of Yerevan.

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