The World Welcomes the New Year 2023 — Live Update – DW – 01/01/2023

  • Revelers ready to party without pandemic restrictions
  • Fireworks display since 2019 will be held in some areas
  • Germany’s Olaf Scholz calls for greater unity in New Year’s message
  • Natural disasters and conflict silence celebrations in parts of the world, including Ukraine

All updates in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).

0500: Despite the bad weather, tens of thousands of people flocked to New York’s Times Square.

This is Time Square’s first large-scale New Year’s gathering without limits.

Partygoers watched the world-famous ball drop as the countdown to the New Year.

The New Year was also celebrated in Mexico, south of the border. This means that 2023 is truly underway in North America.

Mexican President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador welcomes US President Joe Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Mexico to host the North American Summit in just over a week.

0400: 2023 has reached the Caribbean Sea.

New Years in Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada and Haiti.

US President Joe Biden is also celebrating 2023. Biden and his wife Jill arrived in St. Croix in the US Virgin Islands on Tuesday to celebrate the New Year with their families.

New Year has begun in the easternmost part of Canada.

0300: We were celebrating the beginning of the new year at Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro.

Fireworks at Copacabana Beach in Rio de JaneiroImage: Aline Maska/REUTERS

Brazil also expects the inauguration of President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva hours from now. Additionally, football fans will flock to Santos on Monday to say goodbye to the country’s most famous football export, Pele.

Lula’s inauguration would cap off a stunning political comeback for the 77-year-old, who is returning to the Brasilia presidential palace less than five years after being imprisoned on controversial corruption charges.

About 300,000 people will attend the ceremony, which will include a large-scale concert featuring artists ranging from samba legend Martinho da Vila to drag queen Pablo Vitter.

Other South American countries celebrating the New Year include Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Fireworks explode over Elizabeth Tower and the London Eye in the British capital.
London kicked off the New Year with a 12-minute fireworks displayImage: Aaron Chown/dpa/picture Alliance

0000: The United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland welcome in the New Year and the annual Hogmanay Party is in full swing with major fireworks displays in London, Manchester, Cardiff and Edinburgh. About 16,000 people attended the Dublin exhibition on North Wall Quay.

In a New Year’s message, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak acknowledged that the country has had a difficult 12 months due to political and economic hardships, and that the problem won’t “go away” in 2023. I got

However, he believed that the coronation of Charles III in May would help unite the nation.

It’s also 2023 for Iceland, Portugal and the Canary Islands of Spain.

In Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, and Senegal celebrate the New Year.

2306: An hour into 2023, Ukraine reports another explosion near its capital, Kyiv.

Kyiv city and regional officials said on the Telegram messaging app that the air defense system was working.

It was not immediately clear if the target had been hit.

2300: It’s officially 2023 in European capitals like Berlin, Paris, Madrid, Rome, Stockholm, Belgrade and Warsaw.

African countries such as Morocco, Algeria, Nigeria, Ghana and Angola are also celebrating the New Year.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in his New Year’s address that 2022 was not “purely a year of war, suffering and worry”. He said the government was “making our country and Europe independent from Russian gas for the long term” and vowed to continue to support Ukraine.

Scholz’s New Year’s speech focuses on Ukraine

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Berlin hotels reported 90% occupancy ahead of midnight fireworks at the Brandenburg Gate. This is the first time since the pandemic.

President Emmanuel Macron also vowed to continue to support Ukraine “until France wins”. He called on the French public to continue their efforts to conserve energy, but warned that 2023 would be the year pension reforms were implemented.

Nearly half a million people gathered in Paris for the first New Year’s fireworks since 2019.

Sweden took over the rotating EU presidency on Sunday and promised to broker a joint EU response to COVID testing of travelers from China next week amid concerns over the country’s outbreak.

Midnight in Zagreb was also the moment when Croatia abolished its Kuna currency and adopted the Euro, becoming the 20th member of the Eurozone.

2200: Tonight, a curfew has been imposed in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, for 2023. Russia recently stepped up its attacks on Ukrainian cities, including Kyiv, and imposed curfews.

Several people hold sparklers during New Year's celebrations in Kyiv, Ukraine, December 31, 2022
Several Kyiv residents lit sparklers next to the Christmas tree ahead of the curfew.Image: Valentyn Ogirenko/REUTERS

Just before midnight, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said 2023 would be “our year of victory”.

“Wishing a miracle today? Ukrainians have been doing miracles for a long time,” he wrote on Telegram, posting a photo of himself and his wife Olena in front of a modestly decorated Christmas tree.

Other countries celebrating the New Year include Egypt, Libya, Zimbabwe and South Africa.

2100: Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain celebrate the New Year, as do several East African countries such as Moscow, Russia, Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia.

Iran has marked the start of 2023 30 minutes early.

2000: The United Arab Emirates, including the wealthy Dubai playground, just turned 2023. Dubai boasts the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, with spectacular fireworks.

1900: New Year in India. People celebrating in Mumbai with friends and family.

Mumbai's sea promenade lit up on New Year's Eve
People gather at Mumbai’s Sea Promenade to welcome the New YearImage: Punit Paranjpe/AFP/Getty Images

1800: Croatia will adopt the euro as its currency and will join the Schengen Agreement in 2023.

Croatia, which joined the EU in 2013, will abandon its Kuna currency at midnight local time (2300 GMT) and join the free movement zone of the bloc.

Meanwhile, dozens of cities in the western Balkans have canceled New Year’s fireworks displays over fears that the noise and gas will harm animals and people.

The capital city of Zagreb replaced its fireworks show with confetti, visual effects and music, while the southwestern port city of Rijeka aimed to divert fireworks funding to animal protection societies.

Three women hold cardboard cups during a New Year's celebration in Fužine, Croatia.
For more than 20 years, the town of Huzine in southwestern Croatia has held New Year’s celebrations at noon.Image: Goran Kovacic/PIXSELL/picture Alliance

The town of Huzine in southwestern Croatia celebrated the New Year at noon. This has been his tradition for over 20 years.

1700: According to the Chinese lunar calendar, 2023 is the Year of the Rabbit.

Chinese New Year starts on January 22nd.

Illuminated blue rabbit symbol at Pagoda Park, Nanjiang, Jiangsu, China
2023 will be the year of the rabbit according to the Chinese lunar calendarImage: CFOTO/Picture Alliance

It is now past midnight in Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam, which celebrate both the Sun and Lunar New Year.

1500: Chinese President Xi Jinping said in his New Year’s address that China “stands on the right side of history.”

“The world is not at peace,” he said, but Beijing will “resolutely advocate peace and development.”

Chinese leaders have said the country is entering a “new phase” in managing the COVID-19 pandemic.

Light show at West Amusement Park in Huai'an, Jiangsu, China
Huai’an city in eastern Jiangsu held a light show at the West Amusement ParkImage: CFOTO/Picture Alliance

Meanwhile, a celebration is taking place on the Great Wall of China in Beijing.

In Shanghai, authorities said traffic would be stopped along the Bund area on the waterfront so that pedestrians could congregate.

However, they said no formal activities will be held there. About 36 people died after hundreds of thousands of people gathered to celebrate.

Shanghai Disneyland will also host a New Year’s fireworks show.

Harbor Bridge fireworks display in Sydney, Australia
Australia’s largest city held a fireworks display over the Harbor Bridge to celebrate the New YearImage: Bianca De Marchi/AAP/dpa/picture Alliance

1300: The city of Sydney, Australia staged a memorable night with a midnight fireworks display.

Organizers predicted more than a million people would flock to the city’s port area after two years of pandemic restrictions and low-key celebrations.

“We’ve had some pretty difficult years, and it’s really nice to have people back this year,” said Stephen Gilby, city producer of the major event. Sydney Morning Herald.

1100: The island nations of Samoa and New Zealand celebrated the countdown to 2023. In Auckland, crowds thronged below the Sky Tower as the countdown to midnight replaced a fireworks display.

An hour earlier, Kiribati’s Line Islands were among the first places on earth to welcome the New Year.

Refresh the Live Updates page.

lo, mm, kb/dj (Reuters, AP, dpa)

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