Man charged over IRA killing

A man was due to appear in court today charged with the murder of a policeman shot dead by the IRA in the North almost 30 years ago.

Police said the 54-year-old man, arrested yesterday in the village of Swatragh, south Derry, would appear in court in Derry. He is also accused of possessing a gun with intent.

Father-of-two Constable John Proctor (25) was gunned down by the IRA in 1981 in the car park of the Mid Ulster Hospital in Magherafelt, Co Derry, after visiting his wife, who had just given birth.

150ft asteroid on the way

An asteroid that will come within four million miles of Earth in mid-October has been discovered by a University of Hawaii telescope.

The university's Institute for Astronomy said the object located by the Pan STARRS PS1 telescope on Maui had a diameter of about 150 feet.

A university member of the PS1 Scientific Consortium, Robert Jedicke, said the object, discovered in images acquired on September 16, will not hit Earth in the immediate future.

Kim Jong Il promotes son

North Korean leader Kim Jong Il promoted his son Kim Jong Un to the rank of general in the Korean People's Army in the clearest signal yet that the younger Kim is on track to succeed his father in ruling the impoverished country.

Kim Jong Il issued an order yesterday handing six people -- including Kim Jong Un -- the rank of general. Also promoted was Kim Kyong Hui, which is the name of Kim Jong Il's sister.

Her name was listed ahead of Kim Jong Un's.

Domingo to leave Opera

Placido Domingo is to leave the Washington National Opera where he has been artistic director since 1996 when his contract expires next year.

Spanish tenor Domingo (69), who also served as its general director since 2003, holds the same title with the Los Angeles Opera.

In a letter to the opera's board obtained by The Washington Post, he said the opera had been transformed into an internationally-celebrated company.