Vietnam begins search for 2nd prospective space traveler

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More than 30 years after seeing its first citizen travel into outer space, Vietnam is now seeking a candidate to compete with those from 62 other countries for the second chance.

In its latest marketing campaign, Unilever's AXE a deodorant brand targeting young men teamed up with the Ho Chi Minh City Youth Union to launch a recruitment process which will select a young Vietnamese person for the competition.

AXE said at the launching ceremony on Monday that 108 young people will attend a two-week training course at its Global Space Camp in the US.

From the course which will feature competitive space-simulation challenges, the 22 most competent students will be selected for the space trip, which is scheduled to last two hours in January next year.

According to the organizers, Vietnamese people aged 18-35 are eligible to enroll in the recruitment process, which will include an English language test, a health test, and participation in a reality TV show.

Lieutenant- General Pham Tuan, who became the first Vietnamese and also the first Asian to fly into space in 1980, said at the ceremony: "To see the world from the outer space is an experience that cannot be expressed in words.

"And, I believe that it's time the second Vietnamese flew into space."

On July 23, 1980 Tuan went to outer space as a member of an international crew of a Soviet spaceship, spending around eight days there. He was selected to take part in the journey while attending a research cosmonaut training course under a joint space program conducted by the former USSR and Vietnam.

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