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Etihad Airways has offered its heartfelt congratulations to Emiratis, Hazza Al Mansouri and Sultan Al Nayadi, who have been selected as the first Arab Nationals to visit the International Space Station. 

Hazza and Sultan were chosen ahead of more than 4,000 candidates for the landmark mission to the habitable satellite hovering above earth.

The Emirati pair conducted extensive medical examinations performed by specialists at the Etihad Aeromedical Centre in June as part of their selection process.

Etihad also conducted medical assessments for 95 Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre astronaut candidates who were shortlisted for the UAE Astronaut Programme.

Dr. Nadia Bastaki, Vice President Medical Services, Etihad Aviation Group, said: “Etihad is delighted to partner with the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre and make this important contribution which will see UAE nationals enter space for the very first time. We congratulate Hazza and Sultan and wish them the very best as their prepare for their mission.”

An integral part of the UAE National Space Programme, the UAE Astronaut Programme is geared to train Emirati astronauts for different scientific space missions.

The Etihad Aeromedical Centre is one of the few facilities in the region staffed with specialists who have an understanding of the environment in space and its requirements.

The examinations include exhaustive medical check-ups that follow international best practices that are in-line with NASA standards.

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