Over 26 hours and across 39 time zones, the world is celebrating the end of 2017.
New Year’s celebrations kicked off in Samoa, Christmas Island and New Zealand as those countries were the first where the clock struck midnight.
In the U.S., many events are set to occur under heightened security, including in Las Vegas, which is still reeling from the deadliest mass shooting in the nation’s modern history three months ago.
In Australia, revelers in Sydney Harbour already celebrated the new year with a rainbow display of fireworks and lights to honor recently passed legislation legalizing gay marriage in the country.
People across Asia rang in the new year, as many Japanese assembled at Shinto shrines to take part in traditional prayers for peace and good fortune. People at Tokyo’s Zojoji Temple took turns hitting a giant bell 108 times at midnight, an annual practice conducted at other Japanese temples.
Beijing, merrymakers braved frigid temperatures as they counted down to the new year at Yongdingmen Gate, a reconstructed version of the Ming dynasty-era gateway. Police in the Philippines reported that scores of people were injured by firecrackers in raucous celebrations hours before midnight.
The new year is still hours away in the U.S., but hundreds of thousands of people have already started funneling through tight security in New York’s Times Square, where police expect nearly 2 million people to gather for the New Year’s Eve ball drop at midnight.
In Boston, organizers cancelled a parade and fireworks over the Boston Common as forecasters predicted temperatures to plummet below freezing on Sunday night.
At the time of this report, in Nigeria, world’s most populous black nation the New Year is just some 1hour/40minutes ahead, even as many a Nigerians, particularly the Christians are seen rushing down to their religious places of worship for new year eve service. Fire works by reveled pre is also rocking several parts of the country.