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Russian Rocket Carrying Mexican Satellite Crashes

The Proton-M rocket has a history of mishaps. (file photo)

A Russian rocket carrying a Mexican satellite into orbit has crashed just minutes after takeoff.

Russian space officials were quoted as saying that the Proton-M carrier rocket had suffered a malfunction about six minutes after launch from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on May 16.

The Interfax news agency said the rocket crashed into the Chita region of Siberia.

A later report said most of the rocket had burned up as it reentered Earth's atmosphere.

Proton-M has a history of mishaps, leading to the loss of three navigation satellites last year.

The failure came just hours after a separate glitch, in which a Russian Progress spacecraft linked to the International Space Station (ISS) failed to switch on its engines on command from mission control in a planned maneuver to shift the ISS into a higher orbit.

Based on reporting by Reuters, Interfax and TASS