Imperial heir in hospital

PEKING (Reuter) - Aisin Giorro Pu Jie, the 86-year-old brother of the last Chinese emperor, is in hospital. Officials at the Peking Union Hospital gave few details about possible illness, but one said it was 'old age' and not serious; others refused to talk about it.

Pu Jie, once heir-apparent to the throne of the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo, was last seen publicly in October when he met Emperor Akihito, the first Japanese monarch to visit China. In an eventful life he has been by turn prince, prisoner of war, traitor and now retired scholar.