Japan's Ando becomes mother, vows to skate on
Bangkok Post -- Jul 02
Japan's two-time world figure skating champion Miki Ando has revealed she secretly had a baby during a break from competition, but vowed to come back and seek a spot in next year's Sochi Olympics.

Pictures showing the 25-year-old and her baby girl were splashed over the front pages of sports dailies Tuesday, the morning after her revelation on a late-night television show.

"I became a mother after successfully giving birth in April," the 2007 and 2011 world champion said with a big smile on the TV Asahi network.

Ando, who has shunned competition in the last two seasons, did not say who the baby's father was. But media speculated he might be a 27-year-old professional Japanese figure skater who retired from competition after the 2010-2011 season.

Her interviewer quoted Ando as saying off camera that she definitely wanted to get married when "various arrangements have been made with the partner".

Ando said she would pursue her dream of competing in her third Olympics in February and then retire.

"I want to continue working hard on the rink in a responsible manner," she said.

Ando, who in 2002 became the first and only woman to land a quadruple jump in competition, said she became aware of her pregnancy last October when she pulled out of the 2012-2013 Grand Prix series citing insufficient conditioning.

Ando hinted she had considered an abortion.

フィギュアスケートの元世界選手権女王で今シーズン復帰する安藤美姫(25)が、7月­1日のテレビ朝日「報道ステーション」で放送されたインタビューの中で、今年4月に女­児を出産していたことを告白した。結婚はしておらず、女児の父親については明かさなか­った。来年2月のソチ五輪を目指す一方で、今シーズン限りでの引退の意向も示した。安­藤は「報道ステーション」の録画インタビューに濃紺のドレスで登場し、「1人の女性と­して生きたいというわがままな決断により、4月に赤ちゃんを無事出産しました。もう母­になりました」と告白。復帰を目指していた昨秋に妊娠が判明した際、「スケートよりも­その子の命を選んだ」という。安藤は2011年の世界選手権後に当時コーチを務めてい­たニコライ・モロゾフ氏との関係を解消。コーチが決まらず、2シーズン主要国際大会の­出場を見送っていた。

May 31
North Korea fired a missile Tuesday but the launch appears to have failed, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said. (Kyodo)
May 31
A Tokyo court sentenced former Japanese baseball star Kazuhiro Kiyohara on Tuesday to two years and six months in prison, suspended for four years, for possessing, using and purchasing illegal drugs. (Japan Today)
May 31
An estimated 15,000 people die annually in Japan from stroke, lung cancer or other diseases caused by passive smoking, according to a study by a health ministry research team. (Japan Times)
May 31
Okayama Prefectural Police are investigating a shooting incident outside an apartment in Okayama City that left an organized crime member dead, reports NHK (May 31). (Tokyo Reporter)
May 31
Japanese searchers scoured thick forest Monday, looking for a seven-year-old boy whose parents left him in mountain woods as a punishment, in a case that has infuriated the public. (Japan Today)
May 31
Kanagawa Prefectural Police have arrested a 43-year-old man who is alleged to have pushed his girlfriend into Yokohama Bay, reports TV Asahi (May 31). (Tokyo Reporter)
May 31
Defense Minister Gen Nakatani announced Monday that the Self-Defense Forces will be pulled out of Kumamoto Prefecture, 1½ months after the area was hit by strong earthquakes. (Japan Times)
May 30
Fukuoka Prefectural Police are investigating a 29-year-old female sex worker already in custody for attempted murder in a separate case in which an acquaintance fell to her death from a bridge, reports the Sankei Shimbun. (Tokyo Reporter)
May 30
The Japanese government said on Monday it was doing all it could to secure the release of a Japanese journalist being held hostage by an al-Qaida affiliate in Syria, after an apparent photograph of the man was posted on the Internet. (Japan Today)
May 30
Five men died and another man remains in a coma after the station wagon they were traveling in plunged into a dam in Kawachinagano, Osaka Prefecture, on Sunday afternoon. (Japan Today)
May 30
A taxi company was penalized on Tuesday over one of its drivers refusing to pick up a man and his guide dog because it would've made the seats "dirty." (Tokyo Reporter)
May 29
Experts investigating a jet that caught fire at Tokyo's Haneda Airport say some engine turbines were severely damaged. (NHK)
May 27
Saitama Prefectural Police have arrested two organized crime members for operating a grow house for marijuana in Soka City, reports TV Asahi. (Tokyo Reporter)
May 26
Hanako, Japan's oldest elephant who made headlines for spending most of her life alone in a concrete enclosure, died at 69 in Tokyo on Tuesday, NHK (May 26) reported. (Tokyo Reporter)
May 26
A utility knife sitting on the floor near an intoxicated man's bag caused quite a stir in a Tokyo subway station, NHK reported on Thursday (May 26). (Tokyo Reporter)