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Man gets job talking to aliens

By Steve Connor

The problem of who should speak to an alien from another planet that demands ‘Take me to your leader’ might soon be resolved.

The United Nations is about to appoint a little-known Malaysian astrophysicist to head its Office for Outer Space Affairs, which could soon be designated with the task of communicating with extraterrestrials.

Mazlan Othman will tell delegates attending a scientific conference next week at a country house outside London that she will head the UN office and be in charge of talking to any aliens who either arrive here from another world or, more likely, communicate with us.

Dr Othman recently told fellow scientists that the discovery of many Earth-like planets orbiting distant stars suggests that intelligent life may be much more |common in the Universe than many scientists had once supposed.

Professor Richard Crowther, an expert on space law and governance at the UK Space Agency, and who leads Britain's delegation to the UN on the issue, said: “Othman is absolutely the nearest thing we have to a ‘take me to your leader’ person.”

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