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China's 'Jade Rabbit' lunar rover declared dead

China's troubled Jade Rabbit moon rover has been officially declared dead, state media reported Wednesday, in a setback for the country's ambitious space programme.

BEIJING: China's troubled Jade Rabbit moon rover has been officially declared dead, state media reported on Wednesday, in a setback for the country's ambitious space programme.

The rover "could not be restored to full function", the state-owned China News Service said after the landmark mission experienced mechanical problems last month.

The Jade Rabbit, or Yutu in Chinese, was deployed on the moon's surface on December 15. The landing was the first of its kind since the former Soviet Union's mission nearly four decades ago.

The rover experienced a "mechanical control abnormality" late January, according to the official Xinhua news agency, and has been unable to function since then.

The mission was a huge source of pride in China, the third country to successfully send a lunar rover to the moon, after the United States and the former Soviet Union.

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