The battle for the New Year’s Eve ratings is well and truly under way in the US. Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen are hosting CNN’s New Year’s Eve Live, while on ABC, there is Dick Clark’s Primetime New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest. And on NBC, Miley Cyrus and Pete Davidson are broadcasting live from Miami.
There have been some casualties though as a consequence of the pandemic, the New York Times reports, with Fox ditching its Toast and Roast how, and LL Cool J pulling out of the ABC’s offering.
We have Ashanti and Ja Rule performing in Times Square. We’re getting closer.
An upsetting message but a sadly important one in some parts of the world:
Away from the festivities briefly, Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen has given a New Year’s speech broadcast live on Facebook, in which she warned China against “military adventurism”.
“The military is definitely not an option for solving cross-strait disagreements. Military conflicts would impact economic stability,” Reuters reports Tsai as saying. “Our two sides jointly shoulder the responsibility of maintaining regional peace and stability.”
Her comments come a day after Chinese President Xi Jinping’s New Year address, in which he said the complete unification of “the motherland” was an aspiration shared by people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait.
China claims democratically governed Taiwan as its own territory and has increased military and diplomatic pressure in the past two years to assert its sovereignty claims.
This is a perfectly timed shot
associate of hours to go until the ball drops in New York’s Times Square. There’s a bit more to it this year, not just because of coronavirus (though that did see crowd limits reduced from the usual 60,000 to 15,000).
As the clock ticks over, or ball drops, Mayor Bill de Blasio will hand the baton to successor Eric Adams, who is due to take his oath in the square. Adams expressed hope on Thursday that 2022 would be “a new beginning of our resiliency”.
Adams is a former police officer and Democrat who beat Republican Curtis Sliwa (and earlier progressives in his own party) in November’s mayoral race, prommising to cut government inefficiency and enhance public safety. You can read more about him here.
Here’s 1min 23sec of your time well spent – a selection of the firework displays and celebrations from around the world, from Hong Kong to Dubai, Pyongyang to Paris.
Time for a identify of culture, courtesy of the Tate gallery in the UK. This 19th century piece is called The Fairy Lovers, by Theodor von Holst. It features Oberon and Titania from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Among the many determined messages of hope emerging on New Year’s Eve is one from Japan’s Emperor Naruhito, who thanked doctors and other health care workers for their hard work.
“By treasuring more than ever the connections among people, sharing our pain and supporting each other, I hope from the bottom of my heart that we will conquer these hard times,” he said.
The Tokyo Olympic Games, delayed from 2020 due to the pandemic, were one bright identify of “courage and hope”, he additional.
He also expressed concern for countries that without access to vaccines and adequate hospitals.
Empress Masako, a Harvard graduate and Naruhito’s wife, offered prayers and said: “May this year be a gentle and fruitful year for us all.”
Press Association reports that about 1,000 people of all ages climbed to the top of Edinburgh’s Calton Hill to make the traditional countdown to the bells at midnight.
Before Christmas, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon urged people to “stay at home as much as possible” with crowd limits on outdoor public gatherings capped at 500, forcing the cancellation of NYE street parties for a second year.
Scotland’s traditional Hogmanay celebrations have been cancelled because of the pandemic but there was nevertheless room for a identify of bagpipe music in Edinburgh.
Click: See details