Roscosmos has ruled out a manufacturing defect causing the 2
mm-wide hole found in August on the Russian Soyuz capsule, but
NASA has sought to dampen speculation of sabotage.
The puncture has since been sealed, halting the oxygen leak.
Officials said the crew - three U.S. astronauts, two Russian
cosmonauts and one German - were never in danger.
Oleg Kononenko and Sergey Prokopyev's spacewalk, originally
expected to last for six hours, began at 1600 GMT on Tuesday.
After more than five hours of a rare broadcast - showing the
cosmonauts in space trying to cut through an insulate of the
spacecraft with a knife - they uncovered the external part of
the hole, originally discovered in the capsule's internal
covering, and took samples of the exterior insulation.
In line with the instructions from the control center, they also
took pictures of the external side of the hole.
"It is time to go home," a voice from the control center said
shortly before the cosmonauts started moving back toward the
(Reporting by Polina Devitt; editing by Andrew Cawthorne, G
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