Chinese capsule with samples from far side of moon back on Earth

The Chinese government says a return capsule carrying the world's first samples from the far side of the moon collected by an unmanned lunar probe has landed in inland China.

The Chang'e-6 probe was launched last month. After landing on the moon's far side and collecting rock and soil samples, it left the lunar surface on June 4.

The China National Space Administration announced that the return capsule had detached on Tuesday, and touched down in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in the afternoon.

It said the mission was a success.

The capsule will be carried to Beijing for analysis to confirm that the contents are the world's first samples from the far side of the moon.

Chinese President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to the project team, saying the mission's completion is a landmark achievement in China's efforts at becoming a space and technological power.

Observers say China aims to lead the world in lunar exploration and development by touting the success of the mission.