Three astronauts return to Earth
DZHEZKAZGAN, Kazakhstan (AP) — A Russian Soyuz space capsule carrying three astronauts who had spent a half-year aboard the International Space Station landed today in the steppes of Kazakhstan.
The landing occurred on schedule with the capsule descending under a white parachute.
It had undocked from the orbiting laboratory 260 miles above the Earth about three hours earlier.
Russian Mikhail Tyurin, American Rick Mastracchio and Koichi Wakata of Japan had spent 188 days in space.
Russians Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Artemyev and American Steve Swanson remain aboard the station.
Three more astronauts are to launch for the station on May 28.