After 17 days of hard-fought competition, the curtain fell on the Sochi Olympic Games on Sunday night.
About 2,900 athletes from 88 nations and regions competed in 98 events across seven sports. Russia, the host of the Games, topped the medal table with 13 gold, 11 silver and nine bronze, a definitive rebound from the 15 medals the nation won at the 2010 Vancouver Games.
Japan was represented by 113 athletes, who won eight medals, the second highest total for Japan at the Winter Olympics, behind only the 1998 Nagano Games, where it earned 10 medals.
At the closing ceremony, Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee, thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin for the "extraordinary success" of the Sochi Games.
Sochi Mayor Anatoly Pakhomov handed the Olympic flag to Bach, who passed it on to Lee Seok Rai, mayor of South Korea's Pyeongchang, host of the next Winter Games in 2018. Then the Olympic flame was extinguished, marking the close of the Sochi Games.
A fault line running just below the No. 2 reactor of Japan Atomic Power Co.'s nuclear power plant in Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture, is active, a panel of experts at the Nuclear Regulation Authority has concluded for the second time. (The Japan News)
Japan's education minister Hakubun Shimomura suggested Thursday that school curriculum guidelines be revised so as to allow elementary school English-language education to start in the third grade. (Jiji Press)
According to various Japanese news sources, 83-year-old retiree Yasuji Shibata was arrested for selling obscene material via an Internet auction in April for 3,400 yen (about US$28) after police found explicit photos in his home on November 16. (rocketnews24.com)
Police raided Internet proxy server operators across Japan on Wednesday over a spate of online banking fraud cases, with at least two of the operators suspected of helping illegal access from China. (Jiji Press)
Chinese fans expressed an outpouring of sorrow for the death of veteran Japanese actor Ken Takakura, who rocketed to stardom here and became an icon who could bridge the icy relations that exist between the two nations. (Asahi)
Kyoto Prefectural Police on Wednesday morning arrested Chisako Kakehi, a 67-year-old woman linked to a number of mysterious deaths, for poisoning her husband last year, reports public broadcaster NHK (Nov. 19). (Tokyo Reporter)
On Saturday, officers from the Shinjuku Police Station arrested Masako Suzuki, a 31-year-old model with a background in the securities industry, and Yasutaka Okamura, the 66-year-old president of a financial firm, for falsely accusing the president of a chain of restaurants of rape and demanding payment, reports Sports Hochi. (Tokyo Reporter)