According to state-run media outlet Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), Iran successfully launched its second monkey to space and back, the country's latest step toward sending humans into orbit. The monkey, named Fargam, was flown on Iran's liquid-fueled Pajohesh rocket for a 15-minute mission that took him approximately 72 miles into space. Scientists on the ground measured vital signs and signals from the rocket before before it returned to Earth safely.
Iranian president Hassan Rouhani congratulated the scientists, Iran, and Iran's religious leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Twitter this morning:
In total, this is the 2nd monkey sent into space & returned in perfect health to #Iran. I congratulate the Leader, scientists & the nation— Hassan Rouhani (@HassanRouhani) December 14, 2013
Iran launched its first monkey, Pishgam, into space in January, though there was confusion as to whether or not he had returned unscathed at the time.