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Soyuz astronauts return to Earth

A Russian Soyuz capsule carrying three astronauts back from a six-month mission on the International Space Station has touched down safely in the central steppes of Kazakhstan.

The return to earth of American astronaut Tracy Caldwell-Dyson and Russia's Alexander Skvortsov and Mikhail Kornienko had been delayed by a day.

Technical glitches postponed the undocking of the spacecraft.

A hover of Russian recovery helicopters took flight ahead of the landing south-east of the remote central Kazakh town of Arkalyk to intercept the capsule.

Signalling errors in the onboard computer system and a malfunction with hooks and latches on the space station side of the capsule delayed the undocking.

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