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Probe all set to land on comet

Scientists at the European Space Agency are making final preparations to land the first spacecraft on a comet next week.

The launch of a small lander from ESA's Rosetta space probe marks one of the key moments in the decade- long mission to examine comet 67P/Churyumov- Gerasimenko. ESA scientists said that the lander, dubbed Philae, will be released at 8.35am on Wednesday. If all goes according to plan, the 100kg lander will latch onto the comet's icy surface seven hours later.

Princess faces court over tax

A Spanish court has cleared the way for Princess Cristina, the sister of King Felipe VI, to be tried on tax fraud charges in a landmark investigation affecting the royal family.

Investigative judge Jose Castro must now decide whether to formally indict the princess. He said Cristina is suspected of two counts of co-operation in tax fraud.

US terror fund to top $60bn

US Congressional officials say they're expecting a $5.6bn (€4.5bn) administration request to pay for munitions and other military requirements to combat Islamic State militants who have seized control of large swaths of Iraq and Syria.

The funding comes on top of an earlier $58.6bn (€47bn) request to cover overseas military operations to fight terror. It's expected to be addressed in the upcoming post-election session of Congress.

AC/DC hit man case crumbles

New Zealand authorities made an embarrassing about-face when prosecutors dropped a murder-for-hire charge against AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd, saying there was not enough evidence to proceed.

But the 60-year-old member of the popular Australian band still faces a serious charge of threatening to kill, which comes with a maximum prison term of seven years. He also faces charges of possessing methamphetamine and marijuana.

A spokesman said Rudd had suffered extremely damaging publicity and would be contesting all charges against him.


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