Russian vessel safely docked at International Space Station

A Russian cargo vessel has docked safely at the International Space Station carrying mainly water and fuel.

The Progress M-14M spacecraft was launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan early Thursday and arrived at its destination on Saturday at 1108 (AEDT), it said in a statement.

Six men are aboard the orbiting space station: three Russians, two Americans and a Dutchman.

Russia has sole responsibility for taking US and other international astronauts to the ISS following the withdrawal of the US space shuttle in July last year, but its own space program has been hit by a string of problems.

In 2011, the Russian space industry suffered five failed launches.

Last August, a Soyuz rocket and the Progress supply ship it was carrying crashed minutes after blast-off from Baikonour, due to a motor failure, paralysing launches destined for the ISS for three months.

In October, investigators said negligence was to blame.

-AAP

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