The launch of an Ariane-5 rocket, carrying Qatar’s Es’hail1 staellite, from Kourou space base in the French overseas department of Guiana. Es’hailSat CEO Ali Ahmed al-Kuwari has expressed “immense pride” in witnessing in Kourou “the birth of a new star over Qatar” with the successful launch of the Es’hail 1 satellite. “The Es’hailSat programme plays an important strategic role as Qatar works to meet the rapidly-growing communications needs in the region,” the Qatar News Agency (QNA) quoted al-Kuwari as saying. “With the arrival of Es’hail 1, we have completed the first step in our mission to become a centre of excellence in the region and develop a sustainable national satellite industry,” he added. Es’hail1 is the first of a wider fleet that the Qatar operator is planning to order. The craft will provide TV, voice, broadband and government services.