The following is the latest list of selected news summaries by Kyodo News.


Closing ceremony concludes Tokyo Paralympics impacted by COVID-19

TOKYO - The Tokyo Paralympics closing ceremony got under way Sunday night, concluding nearly two weeks of competition among athletes with impairments from around the world, held despite many challenges stemming from the coronavirus.

The ceremony at the National Stadium brings down the curtain on the games held almost entirely off-limits to the public as a result of the pandemic that threw eight years of preparations into disarray.


Taro Kono tops opinion poll as most fit to become Japan's next PM

TOKYO - Japan's administrative reform minister Taro Kono who is also in charge of COVID-19 vaccinations is the most popular pick to succeed Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, who has announced his intention to resign, according to the result of a Kyodo News poll released Sunday.

Kono, known as an outspoken lawmaker adept at social media, gained 31.9 percent of support from respondents in the nationwide telephone survey conducted with 1,071 randomly selected eligible voters on Saturday and Sunday, ahead of former Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba with 26.6 percent and former Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida with 18.8 percent.


ASEAN envoy to Myanmar calls for 4-month cease-fire to deliver aid

SINGAPORE - A special ASEAN envoy to Myanmar said in an interview that he has called for a four-month cease-fire by all sides in the country's conflict to enable the smooth delivery of the first batch of humanitarian assistance to the country expected as early as mid-September.

Speaking exclusively to Kyodo News online Saturday, Erywan Yusof, Brunei's second foreign minister, said he proposed the cease-fire until the end of this year in a videoconference with Myanmar's military-appointed foreign minister, Wunna Maung Lwin, last Tuesday, and that the military had accepted it.


G-7, China, Russia to join ministerial talks on Afghanistan

TOKYO - Foreign ministers of the Group of Seven industrialized nations as well as China and Russia will join multilateral talks to be held possibly Wednesday to discuss the crisis in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan following the withdrawal of U.S. forces, a Japanese minister said Sunday.

Beijing and Moscow are expected to be among participants in an online ministerial meeting on Afghanistan grouping together more than 20 countries, which U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said he will co-host with German counterpart Heiko Maas.


Tokyo Paralympic athletes praise experience but public mixed

TOKYO - As the Tokyo Paralympics come to a close on Sunday, athletes were full of praise for the experience of competing in the Japanese capital, but the public expressed mixed views about the games that were staged amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Following a one-year postponement, the Paralympics featuring roughly 4,400 athletes from some 160 countries were organized under extraordinary measures to prevent the spread of the virus.


Paralympics: Tokyo Games end with Japan forging legends in gold

TOKYO - The Tokyo Games brought Japan 13 more gold medals than the previous Paralympics, as a new generation of athletes contributed a swathe of titles and a few old stagers showed they still have what it takes.

Five years after the disappointment of Rio de Janeiro, where Japan never topped the podium, the nation achieved its equal-third best gold medal total, while tallying 51 medals overall -- one short of its record 52, set in 2004.


Afghan locals left behind by Japan feel anger, hopelessness

ISLAMABAD - With the U.S. military pullout and the evacuation of foreigners and vulnerable Afghans from Kabul completed earlier this month, many locals who have worked for Japan but were left behind in Afghanistan are filled with feelings of anger and hopelessness, they said.

One such Afghan said he lives day to day in a heightened state of vigilance -- even locking his bedroom door when he sleeps -- for fear of his safety under the harsh rule of the Taliban who have returned to power after 20 years.


Car carrying Japan entertainment icon Takeshi Kitano attacked, man aarrested

TOKYO - A car carrying Japanese comedian and prizewinning film director Takeshi Kitano was attacked Saturday night in the premises of a Tokyo TV station by a man wielding a pickax, with police arresting him on the spot, investigators said.

Kitano, 74, also known by his stage name Beat Takeshi, and others were unharmed in the attack that took place around 11:40 p.m. at Tokyo Broadcasting System Television Inc., according to the police.