(BBC) - A Russian spacecraft heading to the International Space Station (ISS) has blasted off from Baikonur , Kazakhstan.
The Soyuz rocket propelled Malaysia's first astronaut into space alongside the first female astronaut to become commander of the space station.
Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor and American Peggy Whitson were accompanied by Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko .
Ms Whitson and Mr Malenchenko will remain on the ISS for six months, replacing two other astronauts.
Mr Shukor will spend nine days on the space station before returning to Earth with the outgoing crew.