Following the safe return of Emirati astronaut Sultan AlNeyadi, leaders in the UAE have expressed their warm congratulations.
UAE President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan conveyed his admiration on Platform X, stating, “The people of the UAE are immensely proud of you and the entire team for achieving significant milestones in space exploration. You carried the aspirations of our nation to uncharted territories, and we celebrate your pioneering journey and secure return.”
Sultan AlNeyadi’s return to Earth marked the culmination of his 186-day stay at the International Space Station (ISS). The SpaceX Dragon spacecraft carrying him and his fellow crew members safely splashed down on Monday at 8:17 am (UAE time) in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Jacksonville, Florida.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, shared his felicitations with the Arab world and its youth, highlighting Sultan AlNeyadi’s remarkable journey. Sheikh Mohammed expressed on Platform X:
“We congratulate the people of the UAE and all Arab youth on the safe return of Sultan Al Neyadi to planet Earth – the first Arab astronaut on a long mission to the International Space Station. Sultan conducted 200 scientific research missions, spent more than 4,400 hours in space and inspired millions of Arab youth that we are able to contribute positively to humanity’s scientific and civilised march.”
Sultan AlNeyadi, the final crew member to disembark from the Dragon spacecraft after the successful splashdown, was greeted with resounding applause and cheers. He is expected to undergo approximately three weeks of rehabilitation before returning to the UAE.
Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum also took to social media to offer his congratulations:
“With Zayed’s ambition, we moved from the desert to space. Today, with the return of Sultan Al Neyadi after completing the longest space mission in the history of the Arabs, we are crowning an important stage in the march of a people who do not know the impossible.”
Sheikh Hamdan emphasized that preparations for future space missions were already underway:
“From today, we are preparing for other tasks in our journey to embrace the stars so that the UAE continues to spread hope and a better future in the hearts of all Arabs. We are proud of Sultan and this Emirati footprint in the space sector through 200 scientific experiments conducted by Sultan Al Neyadi at the International Space Station.”