Spectators were not allowed to witness the fireworks at 2 pm CET in Sydney Harbor and the Opera House in Australia. Authorities threatened fines equivalent to more than 620 euros if someone overcame barriers. Observers reported that Sydney was like a ghost town. The world-famous fireworks lasted only seven minutes instead of the twelve minutes as in the previous year.
In the hours that followed, countries in Asia gradually followed: at 4 pm, Japan and South Korea were on their way. In the South Korean capital, Seoul, for the first time in nearly seven decades, the traditional bell-ringing ceremony at the Bosin Pavilion (Bosingak) could only be seen on TV and on social media.
The start of the year follows at 5 pm in the Philippines and Malaysia, as well as in Taiwan and China. There are no longer any major restrictions on Corona in China. However, New Year’s Eve is not of particular interest to the Chinese either. According to the traditional lunar calendar, the new year does not begin until February. Only then will there be a large travel wave. However, fireworks set off in some cities on Friday morning. Something was also planned in Wuhan, the city of the Corona outbreak. At 6 pm, you enter Thailand and Vietnam in 2021.
At 9 pm CET, the new year has begun in the United Arab Emirates, among other places. A spectacular fireworks display has been planned there in Dubai on the tallest building in the world, the 828-meter-high Burj Khalifa. Despite the curfew with Corona, there should be a big show of fireworks in the Kremlin in Moscow – 10 pm CET.
In South America, people have to wait a little longer: parts of Brazil and Argentina can only welcome the New Year at 4am CET, followed by New York at 6am, Los Angeles at 9am and Honolulu in Hawaii at 11am .
In New York, Times Square’s “ball ball”, a bright and shining crystal ball on a pole, is said to occur in front of a few people rather than the usual thousands.
It will take until 1 PM CET on January 1st for the whole world to slip into the new year. Last up are the uninhabited islands of Baker Island and Howland Island in the Pacific Ocean.
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 201231-99-860389 / 19
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