News / Europe

Japanese Figure Skater Wins Olympic Gold

Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan poses with the national flag after he placed first in the men's free skate figure skating final following the flower ceremony at the Iceberg Skating Palace during the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.
Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan poses with the national flag after he placed first in the men's free skate figure skating final following the flower ceremony at the Iceberg Skating Palace during the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.
Mike Richman
Japan's Yuzuru Hanyu became the first Asian to win the men's Olympic figure skating title, in the final medals event Friday at the Sochi Winter Games.

With a point total of 280.09, the 19-year-old Hanyu topped three-time world champion Patrick Chan of Canada and world silver medalist Denis Ten of Kazakhstan.

All three medalists had flawed performances that included crash landings.  But Hanyu held on largely because of his 3.93-point lead after Thursday's short program.  The competition took place without Russian skating star Yevgeny Plushenko, who withdrew after injuring his back in warmups Thursday.  

Big Day for Belarus, Switzerland

Belarus and Switzerland also had big days in Sochi Friday, each winning two gold medals.

Belarusian Darya Domracheva dominated the women's individual 15-kilometer biathlon, and teammate Alla Tsuper soared high to win the women's freestyle skiing aerials.

Earlier this week, Domracheva won the 10-kilometer biathlon pursuit, becoming the first female Belarusian to capture a Winter Olympic gold.

Winner Switzerland's Dario Cologna celebrates during a flower ceremony for the men's 15 km cross-country classic event at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, Feb. 14, 2014.Winner Switzerland's Dario Cologna celebrates during a flower ceremony for the men's 15 km cross-country classic event at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, Feb. 14, 2014.
x
Winner Switzerland's Dario Cologna celebrates during a flower ceremony for the men's 15 km cross-country classic event at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, Feb. 14, 2014.
Winner Switzerland's Dario Cologna celebrates during a flower ceremony for the men's 15 km cross-country classic event at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, Feb. 14, 2014.
Switzerland's Dario Cologna also won his second gold medal of the 2014 Olympics.  Skiing in short sleeves on another warm and sunny day in Sochi, he was outstanding in the cross-country 15-kilometer classic.  Cologna also captured the 30-kilometer skiathlon in Sochi.

Another Swiss skier, Sandro Viletta, pulled off a surprise first-place finish in the highly anticipated men's supercombined, which consists of one downhill run and one slalom run.

The Swiss now have five gold medals in Sochi, second to Germany with seven.

Britain won its first gold in the other medal event Friday, as Elizabeth Yarnold took first in women's skeleton.

In curling, China and Britain won close games to create a three-way tie with Sweden at the top of the men's standings.  The British women beat Japan, 12-3, to improve to 3-2 and remain in sight of their big rivals.  Undefeated Canada and 4-1 Sweden were not in action Friday.

In men's hockey, shorthanded Sweden defeated Switzerland, 1-0, to remain undefeated at 2-0.  Sweden's Daniel Alfredsson scored with 7:21 left and goalie Henrik Lundqvist had a 26-save shutout.

Sweden said before the game that captain Henrik Zetterberg will miss the rest of the tournament because of a herniated disk, taking a third key player off its roster.

Canada, Finland and the Czech Republic also won in men's hockey.

US, Russia to Clash on Ice

The United States and Russia meet on Saturday in a game featuring two of the men's hockey powers in Sochi.  The U.S. is aiming for a gold medal after a silver in 2010, and Russia is seeking its first gold since 1992.

Russian center Evegni Malkin, a star on the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins, is not taking the U.S. team lightly.

"In the case of the Americans, it will be a good test for us, and we of course understand how strong the American team is," Malkin said.  "If we go out united in a good mood, then we have every chance of winning."

  • Shani Davis of the U.S. skates in the prototype of the official US Speedskating suit during a training session at the Adler Arena Skating Center at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Latvia goaltender Edgars Masalskis reaches to block a shot on goal by the Czech Republic in the third period of a men's ice hockey game at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • The two-man team from Monaco MON-1, piloted by Patrice Servelle, start a run during a training session for the men's two-man bobsled at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • This multiple exposure photo shows the Sweden curling team throwing during a round robin session against China in the Ice Cube Curling Center at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Norway’s Haavard Vad Petersson and Torger Nergaard sweep ahead of the rock during men's curling competition against Canada at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Workers groom the women's downhill course at the Rosa Khutor Alpine center at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Evgenii Itbaev leaps as a friend takes her picture near the Olympic Cauldron at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Norway's Chris Andre Jespersen wears a cut suit as he gets to the finish area after completing the men's 15K classical-style cross-country race at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Swiss fans wear cow costumes and national flags at the Alpine ski venue for the men's supercombined at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 14, 2014.

Meanwhile, Olympic officials said they have sold more than one million tickets for the Sochi games.  The announcement came a day after the Russian men's hockey team debuted in Sochi, helping push the number over the top.  
 
A record 106,000 fans packed into Olympic Park on Thursday, as Russia beat Slovenia 5-2 in hockey.  
 
The head of the Sochi Olympic Organizing Committee, Dmitry Chernyshenko, praised Russian fans for their hospitality.

"The Russian fans are taking every nation into their hearts, not only for the Russian team but also cheering and greeting athletes from all around the world," Chernyshenko said.  "And in turn, we are having an electric atmosphere in the stadium."

The executive director of the International Olympic Committee, Gilbert Felli, echoed Chernyshenko's thoughts.

"For me, the atmosphere's great," Felli said.  "I was so surprised the first day I went to the competition venue in slopestyle.  Russia, where they knew they had no chance to make a medal, that medals are going to made by the Americans, and you could see the Russians applauding, and the kids there and yelling and everything, you said, 'Here we are, the magic of the games are at play.' "

After seven days of competition in Sochi, Norway and the United States are tied in the medal count with 13, followed by Russia and the Netherlands with 12 each.  Canada has 11, and Germany has 10.

There are 98 medal events at the Sochi Games, 12 more than in Vancouver in 2010.

You May Like

Video Analysts: Beijing Parade a 'Bazaar' of Stolen Technology

Show commemorating victory over Japan in World War II involved long, medium and short range missiles, a range of tanks and 200 fighter aircraft More

Bernie Sanders Surge Reflects US Shift on Socialism

Although most analysts say it is unlikely he will get the Democratic nomination, Sanders' campaign opens up questions and issues that are otherwise marginalized More

Video On IS Frontline, Kurdish Fighters Ready for Offensive

Peshmerga soldiers say although they need more heavy artillery, they are poised to take the fight to the Islamic State extremists on their turf More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outragei
X
Henry Ridgwell
September 04, 2015 11:36 AM
The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outrage

The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Russians Observe 11th Anniversary of Beslan School Attack

This week, Russians have been observing the 11th anniversary of the attack by Islamic militants on a school in Russia's North Caucasus region that killed more than 330 hostages, including 186 children. The three-day siege and massacre that started on September 1, 2004 took place in Beslan, a town in the republic of North Ossetia, and is one of the bloodiest terrorist acts ever in Russia. VOA's Mike Richman reports.
Video

Video Native Americans Debate: Father Serra, Saint or Sinner?

Pope Francis will canonize an 18th century missionary to Spanish California during a papal visit to the United States this month.  But some Native Americans have criticized the elevation to sainthood of the missionary priest, Junipero Serra. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Calais School Offers Another Face of Europe’s Migrant Crisis

Europe is facing mounting criticism over how it’s handling its biggest migration crisis since World War II. But not all Europeans believe building walls or passing repressive policies are the answer. A school for migrants in the French port city of Calais, is opening doors and building bonds across nationalities. VOA's Lisa Bryant reports.
Video

Video Kurdish Fighters on IS Frontline Ready for Offensive

Finger on the trigger, the Kurdish Peshmerga soldier stared across the dust at a village taken over by Islamic State extremists. The Kurdistan’s Khazir frontline, just 45 minutes from the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul. And at this point, the militants were less than two kilometers away. VOA's Sharon Behn reports.
Video

Video China Announces Troop Cuts at WWII Parade

Chinese President Xi Jinping Thursday announced plans to cut the world’s largest military force by 300,000 troops. The announcement was made during a massive military parade to commemorate victory over Japan in World War II. The event was shunned by most Western leaders and for some is raising fresh concerns about China’s military ambitions. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Russia-Japan Relations Cool as Putin Visits China for WWII Anniversary

Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Beijing for commemorations of the 70th anniversary of China's WWII victory over Japan. Putin is expected to visit Japan later this year, but tensions between Tokyo and Moscow over islands disputed since the war, and sanctions over Ukraine, could pour cold water on the plan. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Yemen ‘on Brink of Disaster’ as Medical Shortages Soar

Aid agencies warn Yemen is on the brink of humanitarian disaster – with up to half a million children facing severe malnutrition, and hospitals running out of basic medicines. There are fears Yemen's civil war could escalate as the coalition led by Saudi Arabia tries to drive back Houthi rebels, who seized control of much of the country earlier this year. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Apps Helping Kenyan Businesses Stay Ahead of Counterfeiters

Counterfeit goods in Kenya cost the government as much as $1 billion each year in lost tax revenues. The fake goods also hurt entrepreneurs who find it hard to carve out a niche in the market and retain customers. But as Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi, information technology is being used to try to beat the problem.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.

VOA Blogs