Malaysia's first astronaut will not be required to fast while in space even though he is a Muslim and the flight will be during Ramadan, a government minister said Monday.
"When you travel there is no compulsion to fast," Science Minister Jamaluddin Jarjis told reporters.
Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor, 35, is one of three people who will lift off in a Russian space craft on October 10 for a 10-day mission in the International Space Station. He has said that as a good Muslim, he hopes to fast in space, even though his main priority is to conduct scientific experiments.
But Jamaluddin said Sheikh Muszaphar, who has been fasting during training along with his backup Faiz Khaleed, can postpone the fasting until after he returns.