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Aerospace & Defense

China mocks US and says rocket debris landed within its estimates

'Hype and smears were in vain,' according to communist party mouthpiece

China's unmanned Long March 5B was launched into space on April 29 to transport a lab and living quarters to a space station, but its return to Earth was criticized as being uncontrolled and dangerous. (Xinhua/Kyodo)

SHANGHAI -- China refuted Monday "U.S. hype" that its rocket was falling back to Earth in an controlled way, and that landing points for the Long March 5B debris were within its estimates.

"As far as I know, the final stage of the rocket operation adopted passivation technology that would not cause any explosion during orbit and the dispersion of debris in space," foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told reporters on Monday. "The bulk of the components were destroyed upon re-entry into Earth's atmosphere, and the likelihood of any harm to aviation activities and the ground was minimal."

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