Russia ends Gagarin events with fireworks extravaganza in Moscow

Russia’s commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Yury Gagarin’s 108 minute journey into space finished on Tuesday evening in Moscow with coordinated fireworks displays across the capital.

The massive salute to the Soviet hero involved sending up 50 fireworks at each of 13 locations, including Sparrow Hills overlooking the center of the city.

The celebrations were ordered by President Dmitry Medvedev and a Defense Ministry spokesman said they included two completely new fireworks – the bracelet and Tatyana’s Day. All the fireworks were made in Russia, the spokesman added.

The first manned spaceflight took place on April 12, 1961, when Gagarin blasted off from Baikonur in the Soviet republic of Kazakhstan in the Vostok spacecraft. He parachuted to Earth less than two hours later in Russia’s Saratov Region.

Events marking the anniversary were held in Baikonur and Saratov, as well as other Russian cities and 70 countries around the world.

MOSCOW, April 12 (RIA Novosti)

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