Newspapers in China have hailed the success of the Shenzhou VI manned space mission as a great new phase in the country's technological development and proof that its political and economic system is working.
Most commentators seek to reassure the international community that China's space programme is aimed at promoting peace.
However, the overall tone of triumph is tempered by one commentator, who notes that China lags behind the US and Russia in space exploration.
Editorial in Renmin Ribao (People's Daily)
The complete success of the Shenzhou VI manned spaceflight signifies that we have made major progress in the great course of space exploration. This is a new great milestone for our country's hi-tech development, is another proud achievement in our country's reform and opening up policy and socialist modernization, and yet another glorious result of the Chinese people's constant self-improvement and independent innovation. All the sons and daughters of China feel incomparably proud at this. [It] completely stems from peaceful purposes, and is also a contribution to human science and the cause of peace.
Commentator in Beijing's Jiefangjun Bao (Liberation Army Daily)
The complete success of the Shenzhou VI flight has proved once more that the Chinese people not only have the spirit and the confidence, but also have the strength and ability, to occupy a small space in the world high-tech domain, and support themselves in a forest of world nations. The complete success of the Shenzhou VI flight is an inspiration. It teaches us that independent innovation is the only choice for facing new challenges in the world, and is a necessary path for developing nations to move towards strength and prosperity. We are willing to advance together hand-in-hand with the peoples of the world in peacefully using space.
Commentator in Beijing's Huaxia Shibao (China Times)
As an up-and-coming talent in aerospace competition, China has not made attempts to strive for hegemony, and what it has shown is the spirit of exploration in science. The successful Shenzhou VI launch has opened a new chapter in China's aerospace history, and also established a new foundation for the peaceful use of space.
Commentator in Huaxia Shibao
China's manned spaceflight project is also the result of fruitful international cooperation. China and France, Germany, Brazil, Russia, Ukraine and other countries carried out substantive space cooperation, and the results of space science research gained by China are also being shared with the world, and this is China's contribution to human science and the cause of peace.
Commentary in English-language China Daily
While rejoicing in the outstanding achievements, the Chinese people must keep their feet on the ground. Although our country is fast catching up, it still lags far behind the United States and Russia in aerospace and technology. The technological gap, however, may well turn into an impetus to encourage the Chinese people to strive for more scientific and economic achievements. It is hoped the can-do spirit, which has facilitated the success of our manned space mission, will inspire the entire nation to aim higher and build a more prosperous and harmonious society.
Beijing's Guoji Xianqu Daobao (International Herald Leader)
Although China has stressed repeatedly that it is carrying out space exploration for peaceful purposes, some US-led countries are still recklessly promoting the 'China space threat theory'. There is no need for the US to have excessive fears over China, and there should be mutual cooperation, similar to that which it enjoys with Russia.
Editorial in Hong Kong's Wen Wei Po
Shenzhou VI also carried the Chinese nation's mission of peace, indicating that China wants to join with the peoples of the world, and advance hand-in-hand in peacefully using space.
Editorial in Beijing's Xin Jing Bao (The Beijing News)
The Chinese of today not only work by their own sweat and eat their own food, they have also left behind new highs and new thinking for following generations. In this aspect, the roaring flames of the Shenzhou spaceship ascent have provided the best footnote for a national policy of independent innovation.
Commentator in Shanghai's Dongfang Zaobao (Oriental Morning Post)
China's fast-paced steps into the space club have facilitated the opening up of a new era of equal competition and cooperation in space exploration on a global scale.
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