Global New Year parties kick off

Hong Kong saw in 2018 in spectacular style as the southern Chinese city staged a stunning fireworks display over its famous Victoria Harbour.

(VNF) - Hong Kong saw in 2018 in spectacular style as the southern Chinese city staged a stunning fireworks display over its famous Victoria Harbour.

Thousands thronged the harbourside to see the show illuminate the famous skyline as revellers danced to Auld Lang Syne.

"Shooting stars" were also fired from the rooftops of skyscrapers in a 10-minute musical fireworks display.

Global New Year parties kick off

Fireworks light the sky over the Opera House and Harbour Bridge during New Year's Eve celebrations in Sydney, Australia. (Saeed KHAN/AFP)

Australia rang in the New Year with a spectacular display of rainbow-coloured fireworks cascading from Sydney Harbour Bridge, as partygoers marked the nation's legalisation of gay marriage amid tight security.

About 1.5 million people packed the city's seafront to watch the pyrotechnics light up the sky above the historic bridge and the iconic opera house, the first major celebrations worldwide after New Zealand.

"This is a fabulous way to see out 2017 - the year that four out of five Sydneysiders said a resounding "Yes" to marriage equality," said Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore of the nationwide postal vote in support of change.

Thousands turned out earlier in New Zealand's largest city Auckland for the annual New Year's Eve street party, marked by a major fireworks display from the Sky Tower.


Celebrations move to Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe and finally the Americas, with dazzling light shows bidding farewell to 2017.

Global New Year parties kick off

A picture taken on December 31st, 2017, shows a laser show at Burj Khalifa, the tallest tower in the world, to mark the New Year's eve celebrations in Dubai. (AFP/Giuseppe CACACE)

The UK has welcomed in the new year with spectacular firework displays in London and Edinburgh among the highlights. More than 100,000 ticketholders watched London's midnight firework show from the banks of the River Thames. Big Ben also chimed to welcome in 2018 having been turned back on part way through restoration work.

In central London, the soundtrack to the midnight show was dominated by female artists, including Aretha Franklin, Ariana Grande and Florence Welch, to mark the centenary of women getting the vote. Some 10,000 fireworks lit up the sky in a 12-minute display.

Global New Year parties kick off

Big Ben also chimed to welcome in 2018. (Getty Image)

Berlin, Paris and Athens are the latest cities to welcome 2018 as New Year’s Eve celebrations kick off around the globe.

The iconic Brandenburg Gate in Berlin got in the party mood with a dazzling display of fireworks.

Not one to be left out, the sky over Athens in Greece was illuminated with colour above the ancient Parthenon temple.

Samoa was officially the first to welcome the New Year while Baker Island in the U.S. will be among the last at 11am GMT.

Dubai welcomed 2018 in style with a spectacular light display on the world’s tallest building. The Burj Khalifa became the city’s focal point for celebrations with a massive LED lightshow.

In China, thousands watched as the giant skyscraper exploded with colour as the clocks stroke 12 at 8pm GMT.

Despite safety concerns, thousands lined the streets in Istanbul, Turkey. Security measures were ramped up across Turkey, which was hit by a terrorist attack on this day last year.

Russia bid farewell to 2017 with a huge fireworks display in Moscow’s Red Square.

The National Monument in Jakarta was a riot of colour as fireworks filled the sky over the Indonesian capital.

Global New Year parties kick off

The National Monument in Jakarta, Indonesia, explodes with colour. (Picture: Reuters)

Malaysia’s landmark building, the Petronas Towers, in Kuala Lumpur, became the focus of New Year celebrations once again.

Tokyo celebrated the turn of the year at 3pm GMT. Yokohama and Tokyo held impressive festivities. Thousands crowded the cities to celebrate in the traditional way by praying for peace and good fortune at neighborhood shrines, and eating noodles, shrimp, octopus dumplings and sweet black beans.

But small U.S. islands, such as Baker Island and Howland Island, won’t welcome 2018 until noon GMT on January 1st. Hundreds of thousands of people will brave temperatures thought to be as cold as -12C in New.


IS' defeat in Iraq and Syria was one of the key stories this year, although the militants remain a threat and numerous attacks around the world were claimed by them or Al-Qaeda-linked groups.

Donald Trump stole the news spotlight after making his debut as U.S. President in January 2017, with "America first" policies and a bombastic personal style that has shaken up international diplomacy.

The former reality television star is likely to continue dominating headlines in 2018, with escalating tensions over North Korea among a host of global challenges.

Other political and diplomatic earthquakes set to rumble into 2018 include the crisis in the Middle East between Saudi Arabia and its allies against Qatar, and the humanitarian disaster in Yemen.

In Europe, further talks on Brexit will help shape the region's future trade relationship while Russia is set to host the football World Cup amid frictions with the West./.



French Saintes City Wishes to Promote Cooperation with Vietnam Overseas Vietnamese

French Saintes City Wishes to Promote Cooperation with Vietnam

Vietnamese Ambassador to France Dinh Toan Thang recently paid a working visit to Saintes, a city in southwestern France, to promote cooperation between the city and Vietnamese localities and attended the Vietnamese Culture Day, VNA reported.
21:51 | 06/02/2023

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