The world welcomes 2022 with muted celebrations as COVID-19 cases surge


Fireworks light up the sky over Sydney Harbour as the clock strikes midnight on January 01, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. BROOK MITCHELL / GETTY IMAGES

The world rings in 2022 with silent celebrations for another year as the coronavirus pandemic, now fueled by the rapidly spreading variant of Omicron, continues to disrupt daily life around the world. , forced many cities to tone down  or cancel the celebrations altogether.

Times Square in New York City was still hosting an event, but it only allowed a small fraction of the typical crowd, and all attendees over  5 years old who did not qualify for an exception were required to be fully vaccinated and wear face masks.

Cities like Atlanta and San Francisco canceled the typical celebrations.

In New Zealand, one of the first cities to open the New Year, a play of light  replaced  traditional fireworks.

Australia continued with its seven-minute fireworks display over  Sydney Harbor Bridge and the Sydney Opera House, but limited access to central Sydney, the Associated Press reported.

Earlier this week, Dr. Anthony Fauci told Americans not to attend large gatherings on New Year’s Eve. “What I would suggest to people  is not to  go to very big parties of 50 to 60 people where people whistle and all that. Something like partying and  the vaccination status of  people around that area is not known,” said Fauci.





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